Propaganda 101: Leah Remini’s Extremism & Hate

There are unfortunately things happening in the United States today that have happened before in a country it took much of the world to defeat. It’s almost as if the insanity of intolerance and hate recycles, much like the fashion styles that have rolled around from generation to generation. (Women know that if we just pack up our wardrobe when it becomes outdated, in a few decades it will be in again.) 

The same thing seems to be happening with religious discrimination. We go through periods where the inhumanity of the past is regretted and people endeavor to actually get along. Then something happens and we find ourselves attacked by extreme individuals who appear righteously hateful and who have the ability to rile others up to the point where they take actions they would ordinarily eschew. 

White supremacist with confederate Flag
A white supremacist flies the confederate flag at a 2017 rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. Nineteen were injured and one young woman was killed. 
(Photo by Kim Kelley-Wagner/

I’ll give you an example. Leah Remini announced on her now-cancelled religious hate show that she would be going after the Jehovah’s Witnesses after she had been spreading hate about Scientology. What happened? Arsonists who just needed a target attacked Kingdom Halls. Two were burned down. 

Joseph Goebbels, the father of propaganda, has his dead hands all over this type of activity. In fact, he said, “Propaganda must facilitate the displacement of aggression by specifying the targets for hatred.” Well, Leah Remini must have studied him well, because that is exactly what she does. She points to Scientology to hate and someone drives their car into our church’s childcare center. She points to Jehovah’s Witnesses and someone tries to burn them out. 

“We shall reach our goal when we have the power to laugh as we destroy, as we smash, whatever was sacred to us as tradition, as education, and as human affection,” said Goebbels. Remini seems to revel in the fact that she has destroyed her family relationships, cut ties with all her friends, attacked the religion she once embraced and credited with her success, and riled people up enough to threaten the lives of Scientologists. What is the result at the far end of the line? Murder. And yes, one Scientologist was killed by an individual Remini’s hate, lies and propaganda had reached. 

Leah Remini points to Scientology to hate and someone drives their car into our church’s childcare center. She points to Jehovah’s Witnesses and someone tries to burn them out. 

Remini does seem to have that ability Goebbels describes—to laugh as she attempts to destroy what was once sacred to her, including her own family. 

Now while we could theorize as to the cause, I think it has a great deal to do with her failing career. Before her new career selling hate, extremism and vitriol, her career in entertainment was stalling. One media outlet covered her 11 times in five years before she launched her anti-Scientology propaganda campaign. Since, she was covered 67 times in seven years. That’s about twice per year to 10 times per year—a 5X increase, from her propaganda campaign. 

For a failed actress full of hate, that has got to be satisfying.

As Goebbels put it, “The masses need something that will give them a thrill of horror.” 

Joseph Goebbels
Joseph Goebbels, Nazi Minister of Propaganda
(Photo by German Federal Archives, Creative Commons)

“There was no point in seeking to convert the intellectuals. For intellectuals would never be converted anyway,” said Goebbels. “Arguments must therefore be crude, clear and forcible, and appeal to emotions and instincts, not the intellect. Truth was unimportant and entirely subordinate to tactics and psychology.” 

Attacks on religions are rarely based on facts. They are the most alarming lies that can be foisted off on those who react emotionally without ever thinking it through. Tell an intelligent man that those people over there are slaughtering babies and he will go look and find out for himself. Tell an emotional man, or an extremist, the same thing and he will light a torch, pick up a sign and bash someone over the head with it, or worse. You just have to convince him that those people over there are bad—really bad. 

It’s time we start acting like the intelligent and compassionate people that we can all be and that most people like to think they are. We should have buried religious persecution and extremism and hate with our last millennium. We haven’t. Let’s move forward and be done with this. 

It’s time for those who can think and look and see what is true to step up and stop this insanity before it goes too far, as it has so many times in the bloody history of the human race. 

Let us rise to something better. Mob mentality is never the answer. Lies are never the higher ground. 

Be better. Find out for yourself. Don’t prove the man right who said, “If you repeat a lie often enough, people will believe it.” That was also Joseph Goebbels. 

So little of what you may have heard about Scientology is true, but by repetition, the unintellectual has come to believe it. 

Here’s to hoping that isn’t you. 

Deanne Macdonald
Business consultant and student of life.