Leah Remini vs. Everyone: Welcome to the Dark Ages

A recent spate of hate-inspired fires in five Jehovah’s Witness Kingdom Halls brings up a pointed question: is Leah Remini an arsonist now, too?

The past two seasons of Remini’s A&E-sponsored hatefest coincided with hate crimes and vandalism directed at several Churches of Scientology, her targeted religion those two years.

This season, the bullseye has been squarely on the back of the Jehovah’s Witness faith, a religion of 2.8 million in the U.S. Remini announced she would next be attacking the Jehovah’s Witnesses, and the fires began shortly thereafter.

Firefighters in front of a Jehovah’s Witness Kingdom Hall
An article from the NW News Network on the Dec 7th attack on a Jehovah’s Witness Kingdom Hall in Lacey, Washington. (Photo by Tom Banse, NW News Network)

Circumstantial evidence, you say. Coincidence of time, you say. True, Remini didn’t personally set fire to those Kingdom Halls, but rubbing the sticks of hate and ignorance together can just as surely ignite a blaze.

Let’s go back just a few hundred years. We see that for nearly 800 years the Jews of Spain enjoyed peace and tolerance. The arts, literature, science and philosophy all flourished within the Jewish community from about the 8th century through the end of the 14th. Then it abruptly ended. In 1392, a monk, Fernando Martinez, gave fiery speeches denouncing the Jews in Seville, accusing them of everything from licentiousness to godlessness. Fernando was a fine speaker. His followers, inspired by his lies and his passion, set fire to Seville’s Jewish quarter, killing 4,000 men, women and children. Thousands more died in the ensuing riots that broke out across Spain.

So is Remini culpable? Does A&E bear any blame? You be the judge.

Did Fernando Martinez actually tell his followers to set fire to the Jewish quarter? We’ll never know—no one apparently took notes on his speeches, and, as printing had not yet been invented, nothing was in writing. Did Martinez actually strike the first match, fling the first torch, smash the first window? Probably not.

So is he innocent of any wrongdoing?

I think not.

In our own time, a woman drove her car through the front door of a Texas Church of Scientology, causing havoc, property damage and, thankfully, no injuries. A young man threw a hammer through the glass door of a Los Angeles Church of Scientology. Both were “inspired” by Remini.

So is Remini culpable? Does A&E bear any blame?

You be the judge.

True, compared to Fernando Martinez’s antics in the fourteenth century, Leah Remini’s petty little program is strictly small potatoes.

But if last year it was hammers, and this year it’s fire, what will next year bring?


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