To the editors:
I read the article entitled, "The Straight Dope" by Cecil Adams [May 12] and I was appalled that someone who was passing himself off as a source of information would write such outrageous lies and generalities in an obvious attempt to color his readers' views on a particular subject.
I say this because a question was put to Mr. "Adams" about Dianetics. Adams responded and brought up Scientology as well. Nowhere in his response was there any mention of Adams speaking with Scientologists or Dianeticists about these subjects nor did he say that he had even read "Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health" himself. Yet he seemed to be trying to set himself up as an expert on both topics.
The popularity of Dianetics is evident in the fact that over 12 million people have gotten the book and that it has been on bestseller lists since 1950. The author, Mr. Hubbard is well-known and respected for both his fiction and nonfiction works. (Who is Cecil Adams anyway?)
Did Adams speak with Chick Corea, Edgar Winter, Karen Black, John Travolta or Kirstie Alley concerning Scientology and how it has helped them? Or has he asked any of the over 100,000 people who have gotten off of drugs because of Scientology?
Recently, on the Donahue show, Sammy Davis Junior attributed Dianetics to helping him through some hard times. Sammy had just gotten ahold of the book, read it and applied the techniques laid out in the book with the help of a friend. Simple as that. The same has been done by millions of other people from all walks of life.
Adams' byline asks, "Is there anything you need to get straight?" Based on what I just read, Cecil Adams is nowhere on the lists of persons I would consult for truth.
Pat Jones Washington, D.C.
Cecil Adams replies:
I have gotten letters from Scientologists and Dianetics buffs all over the country accusing me of "lies," but no one has bothered to specify exactly what the lies were. The criminal convictions of several key Scientologists are a matter of public record, as are the many lawsuits by former Scientologists accusing the organization of fraud. I am less concerned with Scientology and Dianetics as a philosophy, but I must say that the fact that Hollywood stars such as Sammy Davis Jr. are into it hardly strikes me as much of a recommendation.