To be specific, we got roughly 120 pages, almost a book really, from some random person in Germany called Karsten Sasse. And it goes without saying that it was all in German.
Now, I only know a few words of German, so the vast majority of it may as well have been in Pig Latin for me. But a few things stuck out even before trying to have it translated. Notably, he or she doesn’t know what a paragraph is and doesn’t care much for sentences, because there are no paragraphs in the whole thing, and he or she is quite the fan of run-on sentences.
And Google Translate did a mostly non-awkward job of translating the first paragraph or so, and it appears that the writer isn’t happy with how the German government is treating the Church of Scientology. Here, I’ll let the author hang his or her self:
“Such a comprehensive discrimination and destruction of a small religious-ideological minority is unprecedented in the history of the liberal democratic state example. Here, public funds or tax money for campaigns of hatred and discrimination are used against German citizens who are simply members of a religious community, which are clearly parallels to Hitler’s time. The official reports and statements of politicians, authorities and a lot of other people are plain and clear: to eliminate the Church of Scientology and Scientologists.”
It probably isn’t an exact translation, but you get the idea. They basically feel like they’re being treated unfairly.
Scientology isn’t recognized as an official religion in Germany, whose government views it as an abusive business pretending to be a religion, and German domestic intelligence services have monitored their activities. Reasonable people can disagree on whether this is the right course for Germany to take, but it’s a far cry from what Hitler did. Of course, like all who have no good arguments, the author played the Hitler Card.
More to the point: How did this reach Cadiz? Why did we get this document? I’d say it’s simply spam, but a document of this size would be very expensive spam. Also, why the Scientologists? As far as I know, The Cadiz Record has never covered Scientology, as there aren’t really any Scientologists in Trigg County (that we know of).
Checking the Internet, it looks like at least two other newspapers in the country – the Jamestown Sun of Jamestown, N.D., and the Messenger-Inquirer of Owensboro – have received this exact same packet. The plot thickens.
I’ll leave you with this quote by L. Ron Hubbard, failed science fiction author and the founder of Scientology:
“You don’t get rich writing science fiction. If you want to get rich, you start a religion.”
Franklin Clark is a reporter for the Cadiz Record and can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.