If you’ve spent any time on the internet in the last few days, you’ve likely seen a couple of posts on your favorite blogs or a few of your faves tweeting about a story in Star magazine claiming that Tom Cruise is finally, at long last, leaving the Church of Scientology. Star cites an “insider” who says Cruise recently saw daughter Suri for the first time in forever, and was “devastated” by how much he has missed out on in her life since his split from Katie Holmes.
Now, as tempting as it is for me to devote a chunk of my day to writing about my favorite cult, I chose not to write a post about this particular tabloid rumor, because my rabid fascination with all things Scientology told me to do one thing and one thing only before giving them any credence: see what Tony Ortega has to say. A journalist, Tony’s personal site, The Underground Bunker, is devoted to his decades-long interest in the Church – its information, specifically gossip about Scientology’s legal woes, celeb members and abusive practices, comes straight from (mostly former) members with insider information. In short, I don’t consider a story about Scientology to be worth its salt unless Tony says so.
And here’s what Ortega wrote about Star’s big bombshell:
The insider claims that Tom was devastated to realize how much of his daughter’s life he was missing out on. “When she speaks to him on the phone, it’s becoming more and more like she’s talking to a stranger.” Well, that’s heartbreaking, if it’s true, and we would hope that Tom would be affected and do something about it. Like, you know, visit her more often.
And here’s the thing. The “insider” clearly has no idea whether or not Tom is actually going to sever ties with Scientology, and Star itself hedges its bets, saying that Tom “may soon part ways with the cultlike religion.”
Cue the sad trombone: wah wah waaaaaaaah.
But now that you know you’ve been had, it’s too late — you’ve paid your money based on the salacious cover headline, and only now do you realize that Star magazine doesn’t have the slightest idea whether Tom Cruise is actually leaving Scientology. In fact, Star magazine doesn’t have the slightest idea what Scientology is. All they know is that it’s a word that sells copies, and they love teasing readers with the idea that Tom is on his way out.
Ortega also posted the cover of a Star magazine from three years ago, basically making the exact same claim — a claim which obviously never proved to be true. I’m not saying tabloids are always wrong about their rumor-mongering, by the way. In Touch, for example, was the first media outlet to report on the Duggar Family’s molestation scandal. And many, many, many celebs are responsible for leaking rumors and gossip about themselves to the tabloids for publicity. But the Church of Scientology doesn’t play for tabloid attention and is extremely weird about the press in general, so the chances of an anonymous source in a tabloid story having any real dirt is minimal. Basically, what I’m saying is, if you got all excited by the possibility of Tom Cruise bailing on the Bridge to Total Freedom, don’t waste $4.99 on Star and read The Underground Bunker for free instead.
Which brings me to the larger bubble I need to burst. You guys, Tom Cruise is not leaving Scientology. Not now. NOT EVER.
I’m sorry, but it’s just not going to happen. Believe me, I am right there with you, wishing he would! It is basically my biggest dream in life, besides someday having Channing Tatum hump my face with his junk like in “Magic Mike XXL.” Tom Cruise leaving the Church of Scientology would probably seriously speed up its inevitable demise — especially if he was vocal about why he was leaving. But that’s the thing. He can’t be vocal without taking a huge amount of responsibility for his own culpability in some of their most grotesque practices. Tom Cruise is directly implicated in a number of Very Shitty Things, for example:
- Conspiring with Scientology to wire-tap Kidman’s phone, after Church leaders convinced him that she was a “Potential Trouble Source.”
- Allowing the Church to turn his two eldest children, Isabella and Connor, against their mother, Nicole Kidman, in the aftermath of their divorce.
- Ignoring the various abuses Church inflicts upon its members, especially members of their religious order, the Sea Org, while attending Scientology events, many of which were thrown in his honor.
- Employing Xenu knows how many Sea Org members on his staff — knowing that they were worked into the ground for an inhumane amount of hours at a reported paltry wage of 40 cents an hour.
I mean, that’s just a start. And that’s without taking into account what else Scientology might know about him — and have on file! — from his auditing sessions. Auditing sessions are sort of like talk therapy, but they’re recorded and what you say in them can and will be used against you at a later date, including and especially if you dare leave the Church of Scientology and take your big movie star paycheck with you.
Let’s also review what Tom Cruise has allowed the Church of Scientology to do to him and the people in his life in his 20+ years as a member. The Church has:
- directly helped to end Cruise’s marriages to Mimi Rogers, Nicole Kidman and Katie Holmes,
- destroyed Kidman’s relationship with her and Tom’s adopted children by convincing them she was a Suppressive Person,
- handpicked girlfriends for Cruise, including actress (and Scientologist) Nazanin Boniadi, who was made to work manual labor as punishment for accidentally “insulting” Miscavige, and was dumped by Cruise soon after,
- come between Cruise and his youngest daughter Suri, who is effectively being raised solely by Holmes, because the Church doesn’t want him to maintain any connection with Holmes, who is now an SP,
- and basically turned him into a national laughingstock by sending him out as a Scientology evangelist, and his career hasn’t quite recovered.
And after all of that, Cruise remains a diehard Scientologist. Y’all, if Tom hasn’t had his epiphany by now, he’s never having it. Actually, lemme rephrase that, because I suppose it’s possible that Cruise realized already that Scientology is nothing but horseshit — if Tom hasn’t realized that whatever Scientology does/protects for him is not worth what it costs him, not to mention all of the far less fortunate and wealthy people working in Church servitude, by now, HE NEVER WILL. And he hasn’t. So he won’t.
[Photo: Getty Images]
Original by Amelia McDonell-Parry @xoamelia