“Thank you for your email and for voicing your concerns and thoughts on Cordova Community Council’s Kids Day in the Park event. Your email led to thoughtful conversations and discussions. Both SMUD and the Council seek to be inclusive in all that we do. As the convening party of the Rancho Cordova Interfaith Council, the Cordova Community Council looks to avoid picking among religious groups for participation. Instead, they support the inclusion of all so long as they act in a manner which reflects the family-friendly and kid-friendly environment developed at Kids Day over the 36-year event history. The Church of Scientology has been participating at Kids Day in the Park for at least 15 years with no issues. They have abided by all of the rules and expectations over the years while handing out printed materials to any visitor who requests. There is no pressure for anyone to do or accept anything. For all of these reasons, SMUD will continue to support the event.”
“I’m sure you’re aware that due to COVID-19, this year is a “drive through event,” so there is no opportunity for real conversation for any of the participating groups. In keeping with special event guidelines in the City of Rancho Cordova, there will be a designated “protest area,” and we very much encourage you to take advantage of it.”
“As a community-owned utility, SMUD literally support hundreds of groups and events every year—it’s the very fabric of who we are and what we do.
Thank you for reaching out.
Director, Communications and Marketing”
While Scientology claims it is a religion, front group Citizens Commission on Human Rights, CCHR, is a secular organization. So why is SMUD insisting this issue has anything to with religion?
“As the convening party of the Rancho Cordova Interfaith Council, the Cordova Community Council looks to avoid picking among religious groups for participation.”
Kid’s Day highlights National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day. Cordova Community Council describes this event as a “festival geared to families of small children. It is also a Health and resource fair with providers on hand to engage parents and provide information.”
If this is a health and resource fair geared towards small children scheduled to have providers on hand to engage parents why is the Council and now SMUD treating this as a Free Exercise/First Amendment issue?
CCHR is NOT a health information provider. They are, according to their own definition, a watchdog organization dedicated to fighting and exposing abuse in the psychiatric community.
This mission has nothing to do with providing mental health support or resources to parents of small children.
CCHR is not qualified to do so.
“Instead, they support the inclusion of all so long as they act in a manner which reflects the family-friendly and kid-friendly environment developed at Kids Day over the 36-year event history. The Church of Scientology has been participating at Kids Day in the Park for at least 15 years with no issues. They have abided by all of the rules and expectations over the years while handing out printed materials to any visitor who requests.”
They support inclusion of all? Even those who have no credentials? No experience? No background?
Should they then allow the groups who believe autism can be cured with bleach enemas as long as they smile and abide by the rules? Somewhere along the way it would appear that the very children Cordova Community Council purports to want to help have been forgotten.
Does Cordova Community Council or any of the event sponsors have any idea what the printed material that CCHR has been handing out for the past 15 years includes? As the organizers of this event Cordova Community Council has a responsibility to the community.
The real issue here is that because of some misguided ideas about “religious rights” Cordova Community Council and their sponsors are allowing a secular organization with absolutely no medical, scientific or psychological foundation to advise Rancho Cordova families about mental health.
All because they play nice?
CCHR turned the campus of the University of Ottawa upside down with their Psychology: An Industry of Death exhibit. The students there had the good sense to loudly object to the disinformation and false facts proffered by this group.
It wasn’t that the Scientologists running the exhibit were being unfriendly, it was the message that was patently offensive.
CCHR does not believe that mental illness is real.
So how can they be a community advocate in this subject?
CCHR believes that mental disorders afflicting children are nothing more than misdiagnosed behavioral issues. This opinion completely nullifies the painful, complex struggle families face.
Worse, it places an unfair burden upon the parents, casting blame and responsibility where it does not belong.
How is this attitude family friendly?
Hiding behind the façade of religious tolerance is a cop out and does a serious disservice to the community.
This is not about religion.
It is about a hate group who would return the stigma surrounding mental illness to pre Victorian attitudes. A group who insists mental illness does not exist.
CCHR has no credentials, no research background.
Yet they presume to advise families about conditions they do not even believe in.
When will those in positions to stand up, stop being cowards and start saying “NO” to Scientology’s intolerance?
Ironic that while Cordova Community Council and SMUD are so blinded by their ideas of religious tolerance, Scientology is being completely intolerant of those who suffer and struggle with mental disorders.
The very inclusion SMUD self righteously proclaims is not extended to anyone with anxiety or depression. No one with a serious mental disorder is even allowed to join Scientology in the first place.
Anyone who wonders what kind of substitute treatment CCHR would have the world seek in place of therapy and medication needs only Google the name “Lisa McPherson” to see just how friendly, tolerant and knowledgeable Scientology actually is.