Sometimes we forget…
Leah Remini was involved in Scientology from a young age. It shaped her whole world and everything in it. She believed, wholeheartedly that what she was doing, what she was standing up for, was right and true and for the good of all Mankind.
She wanted to help.
For her, as for many others however, Scientology began to lose it’s shine and the truth of what it is broke through. She left the Cult and tried to pick up the pieces, or more accurately tried to discover from the beginning who she is as a person and what her life is without the taint of abusive mind manipulation.
She then did a hugely brave and frightening thing. I don’t care how strong one is, what she did was an amazing act of courage and defiance.
Leah Remini stepped up and decided to start finally Clearing The Planet.
Loudly and noisily.
She could have gone on with her life. Learning to actually think for yourself, learning how to be a social being, learning how to live a life of reality and growth takes a lot of energy, dedication and focus.
We could all have seen the headlines about her departure from Scientology for a few weeks and then all moved on to the next Big Thing.
Leah Remini could have simply moved on with her own life and that would have been her right.
But she didn’t.
She chose something entirely different. Not only did she come out swinging, she came out of Scientology still instilled with the desire to do good.
So she created a television show called The Aftermath.
Together with Mike Rinder, Leah creates a safe place for others, like her, to stop and breathe and then tell their story. To finally get their say.
It started an awareness.
People everywhere began searching and seeking. Former members found that speaking out was becoming easier and no longer relegated to private chat rooms or message boards. Those who suffered the ultimate destructive horror of molestation and rape found new support as they told their stories.
Society at large was learning about this multi million dollar conglomerate who has somehow been granted Religious Status and how it uses that status as permission to do atrocious acts.
Never Ins by the thousands started asking questions, started discovering people like Tony Ortega and Jeffrey Augustine, Marc and Claire Headley, Amy Scobee and all the others.
Leah Remini granted those who escaped from Scientology a new element of legitimacy and acceptance that they had been denied for so long.
She gave them a VOICE.
But the bottom line here is that she did not have to do any of this.
She does not owe this current dedication of her life to anyone.
What she is doing, she is doing by choice not out of obligation or duty.
And she is paying for it in spades.
Edward Parkin, OSA goons, Scientology, Miscavige; all are on her constantly. She faces the very best that Fair Game has to offer including ugly, hurtful, horrible smears by her own family members still behind the fences. To be so betrayed by a loved one alone is beyond imagination but Scientology continues to pile upon her that pain along with the responsibility of the world. She is the Priestess of Hate, Hate monger, and all the other horrible things said daily. She is responsible for the thoughts and actions of everyone in the world who dares to speak out against Scientology. It is on her shoulders that rests the responsibility for heinous crimes including shootings, arson and even murder. She is followed, harassed, stalked and maligned and she has lived this way for years.
All because she chose freely to help others.
Not only does Scientology place the weight of it’s ugliness on her back, but people all over are looking to her for help. There are many posts of people demanding of Leah “why aren’t you addressing XYZ, too?” “Leah, please, please look into XYZ!”
There is so much constant responsibility, constant blame weighed down on her shoulders it’s a wonder she isn’t a foot shorter.
What is it to live like this on a constant, daily basis? How much stress can someone continue to live under before their heart breaks?
She can stop at any time. She doesn’t have to do what she is doing.
Every new Season, every new episode is a gift not an obligation.
None of us has the right to demand anything from her. Leah Remini has a life, a career and a family.
Her life does not demand Scientology and The Aftermath.
No matter what is going on, not only are we the viewers not privy to the inner workings of what she, Mike and A&E are doing, but we are not owed that insight either. We are not entitled to demand or expect anything from her. Conversely as Citizens we are entitled to question and demand answers from our government and from law enforcement for their lack of action.
Leah is allowed to be exhausted and hurt and to make mistakes just like everyone else although it is not society’s right to decide if what she is doing is a mistake or not. We don’t like it when others judge us, especially when they have no idea what goes on in our lives.
She is not perfect or accountable because she is trying to help others.
There are many people out there who know how difficult it is to be THE person everyone around you looks to. To be The Strong One who is the one who puts out the fires, deals with the family drama, takes care of their own family as well as sorting it all out for the extended family. It is exhausting, stressful, frustrating, angering and chaotic. When you are The Strong One, that everyone else looks to, then who is The Strong One for you? Who is your soft place? There are times when The Strong One really wants to just throw up his or her hands, yell “FUCK IT, I AM OUT!” and go have a good sleep for the first time in months.
So imagine, if you can for just a moment, what Leah’s life might be like with all that plus Scientology on her back 24/7.
Then imagine all of that with the addition of people you don’t even know making demands on you.
How would you deal? Could you deal?
I’m not sure how I would react to living under such conditions.
What Scientology does to her goes way beyond bullying. It is daily, never ending ABUSE in it’s purest form.
Because we are such a media driven society it is easy to forget that even celebrities are simply people, prone to the same flaws and foibles that we all are. They are just as human as the rest of us…well with the exception of Tom Cruise who has morphed into something none of us can understand.
Whether we agree with the content of The Aftermath or not, the least we can do is give those involved with it the space to breathe while they are navigating their way through the morass that is Scientology.
Allowing Leah, Mike and everyone else from top to bottom the space to do the best they can, especially knowing where they came from, is probably the best thing we, as supporters and viewers can do.
We all need to remember that Leah and Mike are also former members of Scientology who are still dealing with their baggage and emotional damage like so many others. They need our support just as much as any other ex.
Leah was a Scientologist, too.