Automobile Association of America

September 19, 2017

AAA—It is Time For “Tolerance, Inclusion and Diversity,” Not Religious Discrimination

More and more executives and business leaders are waking up to the fact that they have a moral obligation; in a recent New York Times article, Mary T. Barra, Chief Executive of General Motors, emphasized this when she called on people to “come together as a country and reinforce values and ideals that united us—tolerance, inclusion and diversity.”

September 19, 2017

Automobile Association of America
Heathrow, FL 32746

Dear Sirs,

What if your religion was the subject of a biased TV documentary?

What if apostates that you knew to be unreliable were among the only contributors to this program, and that the side you knew to be true was never allowed expression?

What if lies put forth by that show inspired acts of violence and intolerance?

AAA

What if you then noticed that the show got, of all things, an Emmy?

I have been a Scientologist for nearly 35 years. Scientology helped me turn my life around when I had a crisis early in my life, and I have used it to guide my successes in my career and family life since then. My wife of 30 years and I have raised our daughter as a Scientologist, and she is a happy and productive member of society.

I have been exposed to various false reports about my religion over the years, and indeed have come to recognize them as the growing pains of any new religion.

But Leah Remini’s show sinks to a new low, as its purpose seems nakedly to promote violence and bigotry against a group that makes very positive and laudable contributions to society.

As recent national events show, there is no broad support for racism and intolerance. Indeed, it has become one of the key issues of our times. Religious intolerance is an important dimension of this, and is justifiably condemned.

Religious intolerance fed to television audiences as “documentary” and carrying the full weight of modern mass media is not merely duplicitous and foolhardy, it is a dissonant echo of the worst and most notorious of mankind’s actions against people of goodwill through propaganda.

To me it is sadly ironic that Leah’s show is on the Arts & Entertainment Network; it is neither. This offensive, bigoted show should be condemned and cancelled.

More and more executives and business leaders are waking up to the fact that they have a moral obligation; in a recent New York Times article, Mary T. Barra, Chief Executive of General Motors, emphasized this when she called on people to “come together as a country and reinforce values and ideals that united us—tolerance, inclusion and diversity.”

Where does Ms. Remini’s show fit into that philosophy?

As a professional actor for over 30 years, and having worked at every major television network and film studio, I know a bit about how things work; it’s a business. I intend to signal my outrage with my wallet, ceasing to patronize companies that use Ms. Remini’s show as an advertising channel, blocking them in the same way that I block the unwanted pop-up ads that occasionally pollute my Facebook feed.

To me it is sadly ironic that Leah’s show is on the Arts & Entertainment Network; it is neither. This offensive, bigoted show should be condemned and cancelled.

Let me ask again the question that I originally posed to you, the individual reading this letter: what if it was you, and your religion?

Sincerely,
Jim Ross Meskimen
Los Angeles, Calif

Take Action

COMBAT HATE SPEECH
& DISINFORMATION

If you have encountered hate speech and disinformation online, in the media, or in any public venue, take action by reporting it here.

PROMOTE
FREEDOM OF RELIGION

Urge adoption of the Charter on Journalistic Ethics in Relation to Respect for Religion or Belief. Make your voice heard.

ABOLISH DISCRIMINATION
OF ANY KIND

The first step in fighting intolerance and discrimination is raising awareness. Report discrimination of any kind to STAND here

Sign Up for Updates