Scientology Crime Syndicate

04 Nov 2000

realpch <realpch@aol.com>

San Francisco Picket Report, Saturday November 4, 2000

It was a bright gusty morning as I set out for the regularly scheduled first-Saturday-of-the-month picket of the San Francisco Scientology Org. Jour and I arrived at just about noon, and it was one of those windy afternoons where navigating picket signs can be a little challenging, but not the worst I've experienced.

Soon after we arrived, we encountered a fellow I'd never seen before holding a couple of binders, the top one said something about "Hubbard Seminars". I glanced at them right after he started questioning Jour about being paid to picket. He asked us what our hourly rates were! He said he knew of some "old man" who got paid to picket the SF Scientology Org. Then he asked if we had ever heard of Bob Minton. He never told us who the old man was, and we assured him that we were not being paid to picket, and we didn't know of anyone else who was. He kept asking if Jour had ever heard of anyone saying that people got paid to picket. I myself have heard it suggested a few times by Scientologists, and for some reason I imagine that I will hear it again the next time we picket.

All was quiet for some time, and then Jeff Quiros turned up. We hadn't seen him for a couple of months and were a little concerned that perhaps he was under pressure for not "making it go right" in regards to us picketing the Org. He assured us that all was well with him, and a few pleasantries passed before he got down to what was apparently the order of the day... attempting to intimidate Jour.

Jeff had a camera when he came out, and he took quite a few pictures. He also had in attendence, a young fellow with a video camera who trained that camera on Jour and kept it there for about an hour. After Jeff took his pictures, he got a very small tape recorder and a honking great microphone which he kept in Jour's face for, oh about 20 minutes (it seemed longer to me) as he asked her numerous pointed questions which seemed to be designed to establish that she, Jour, was nothing more than a despicable suppressive and bigot. Oh yes, I forgot the innocent-faced teenaged girl who was passing out the all-purpose "Religious Bigot" flyers on both Jour and myself. Jeff complained about the inflatable Xenu which accompanied Jour, which was the closest that I've heard him get to discussing that interesting alien. He seemed to be more comfortable referring to that aspect of the Church of Scientology's cosmology as "belief in past lives." On and on he went. Eventually Jour declined to be interviewed any further. As I said, it lasted about 20 minutes, which was 20 minutes more than I would or could do.

After Jeff went back into the Org, the cameraman and the teenaged girl with the "Religious Flyers" stayed out for quite a while longer. She did her best to hand one to everyone who accepted a flyer from Jour or I. Me, I felt sorry for her. The video camera continually tracked Jour and did not follow me.

Well! Into this unpleasant atmosphere bounded Murdoch. We were glad to see him and his usual energy. And a bit later, a newbie picketer, one Marcab, also arrived. I think that four makes a nice number for picketing, for safety's sake.

Aside from what was reported above, the usual things happened at the picket. A number of people thanked us for our work. We got honks and thumbs up from people driving by in cars. One black man who accepted a flyer told me that he'd talked with the Org some 20 years earlier and was told that black people should "get off their asses and earn enough money" to pay for Scientology courses. He observed that the people who gave him this information were apparently earning about 40 cents an hour. Gosh, I hope they got more than that. I wonder how it's breaking out hourly for the folks on staff these days.

Anyway, a pretty good picket, which broke off at about 2:30.



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