A man was recently shot at the Scientology Celebrity Centre in Los Angeles while approaching with two samurai swords. It was a good effort, although it is a shame he was put down before he did any real mischief. In a just world, Scientology centers would be under daily assaults of this nature.
Scientology is not only a cult, but a particularly nasty and vicious cult that gives false hope to thousands while sucking their money into its ravenous maw. Scientology takes advantage of vulnerable people in the worst ways.
While assuming the trappings of science--Hubbard claimed he invented a "science of the mind"--Scientology practices none of the methods or skepticism of real science. Its bizarre mixture of "e-meters" and "engrams" and aliens seems like a laughable parody of a cult--until one sees the the grim seriousness of its proponents.
In civilized parts of the world, Scientology is recognized as a cult, and taxed appropriately. However, in the United States, the Church of Scientology is afforded a religious exemption from taxation. We Americans go to extreme lengths to defer to religion of any conceivable form. In this case, and in the case of the Mormon Church--which directly intervened in politics by financing California's Proposition 8--their tax-exempt status should be revoked.
If people really want to believe crazy things, fine. But does their folly have to be subsidized by everyone else? As the great P.Z. Myers so frequently points out, "Religion poisons everything."