author of "Oath Betrayed: Torture, Medical Complicity, and the War on Terror." He is a professor of medicine at the University of Minnesota Medical School and a faculty member of its Center for Bioethics. He is also a practicing physician.
executive director of the Center for Victims of Torture and the past president of the National Consortium of Torture Treatment Programs.
Last week, Democracy Now! took a look at the controversial Church of Scientology, whose activities have been hitting the headlines both at home and abroad. Today we have both sides of the debate on the Church of Scientology.
Last month, more than a thousand Scientologists in Frankfurt, Germany, chanted slogans and songs borrowed from the US civil rights movement, alleging that they are victims of religious persecution. A number of German states and organizations have banned Scientologists from participation in political parties, and the German government voted to allow the country’s intelligence agency to keep tabs on members in Germany.
The French parliament recently designated Scientology a sect, included on a list of 173 groups that should be tracked to prevent cult activities.
In Los Angeles, at least three public school teachers are using Scientology teachings in their classrooms and one of them is hoping to establish a separate, tax-funded charter school using the same methods.
• Bill Moon, a long time Scientologist. He is a financial services professional based in Southern California.
• Jim Siegelman, the co-author of Snapping: America’s Epidemic of Sudden Personality Change. He has been studying Scientology for more than 20 years along with other spiritual and personal growing practices in the United States. Snapping, originally published in 1978, has recently been updated and re-released.