A Note from the Editor:
The Plantain is a satirical and fake news site. We publish parodies. We cannot be trusted.
That being said, when we satirize something we aren't doing so to just look down at that thing. Instead, what we try to do is get locals to learn a little bit about what is happening in Miami by poking a little fun at current events. We do this by embedding links to actual news publications in our articles so readers can click on the real story and learn more about what we are making fun of. It's a tool we use to trick ourselves into believing that we are being helpful and not just a cynical and click-baity fake news site.
Last week we did a piece called "Thousands Accidentally Attend 'March For Scientology'" which falsely described how thousands of people looking to attend last week's "March for Science" misread an Eventbrite post by local Scientologists and accidentally attended a "March for Scientology." It was very clever.
That article explained that there was, and this is completely true, a GIANT SCIENTOLOGY CENTER BEING BUILT ON US 1. Here is a picture of the building from Scientology's website.
We were dismayed that the construction of this GIANT SCIENTOLOGY CENTER had not been reported by any of our local papers, but figured it was because the GIANT SCIENTOLOGY CENTER had not opened yet. We figured that once it did it would be reported on by more legitimate news sources. We were wrong, apparently.
Yesterday, the GIANT SCIENTOLOGY CENTER officially opened on U.S. 1 for a giant roof-top gala attended by thousands, including David Miscavige, Scientology's controversial chairman. The event also featured remarks by City of Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado who, according to Scientology's website, made the following speech:
“To me, the Church of Scientology is very simple. You learn, you work, you think positive and you help people. For that, and many another reasons, you are a good fit for our city. Miami is a gateway to the American Dream. And you have now opened those gates by transforming a cold, sterile building into a vibrant center. …And your hours of volunteerism will change lives, no doubt about that. So now, all I ask is that you give us even more of your ‘hours.’ Ten thousand, twenty thousand—I’ll take what I can get. That is what we need from the Church of Scientology.”
The Plantain believes Scientology is, at best, fucking crazy. They reportedly believe that a Galactic Overlord named Xenu captured a bunch of people's souls in volcanos or something and that somehow causes people to feel bad. Here is a video from the South Park guys mockingly explaining what Scientologists believe:
Now, that certainly seems nutty. But honestly, it doesn't seem any crazier than literally any other religion that ever existed. We as a society tend to look down at Scientologists because their doctrines are only 60 years old and seem to have been written for the primary purpose of selling books, and not thousands of years old and written for the primary purpose of keeping the lower classes in line or giving people who have nothing some hope that eventually everything will be cool.
The Plantain, however, believes in the First Amendment and believes that people can be as crazy or as irrational as they want. And whether that brings them to a church or a synagogue or a mosque or a GIANT SCIENTOLOGY CENTER on U.S. 1 is absolutely irrelevant to us.
It should be noted that Scientology has developed a reputation of being a little more dangerous than other religions. For one, they openly advocate against psychiatry, which can and does help people. There is also a trove of allegations of financial, physical, and emotional abuses levied against the organization by former members as reported in many books, documentaries, and TV series.
That all seems bad, and if true should be a cause of concern to our community...especially if the Mayor of Miami is welcoming them so enthusiastically to our City.
I have met a bunch of Scientologists and they have all been pretty nice people that seem to be searching for happiness or belonging. From what I understand, the early scriptures are mostly about selling books and courses that teach interpersonal life skills that I have heard are very helpful. It's later on, I believe, when it gets all intergalactic and nutty.
This is all to say that I don't have some instinctual disdain toward Scientologists, any more than I do any other religion. But I do have an instinct to make fun of it, especially now that I have to pass by a GIANT SCIENTOLOGY CENTER everyday on my way to work.
But I can't in good conscience write satirical articles about Scientology in Miami unless I have something to link back to that explains to my readers that the GIANT SCIENTOLOGY CENTER that I am going to eventually make fun of actually exists.
So there it is. Actual news reporting by The Plantain. I look forward to The Miami Herald sending me one of their new Pulitzer Prizes.
The Miami New Times has now reported on the GIANT SCIENTOLOGY CENTER'S opening and has credited The Plantain with breaking the story. The Herald, however, has still not sent me their Pulitzer Prize.