Larry King Live
December 20, 1993
Inside the "Church" of Scientology
Guest: "Reverend" Heber Jentzsch, "Church" of Scientology
The president of the church of Scientology discusses his church's philosophy and activities and attempts to dispel many of the negative beliefs about Scientology.
Announcer: Welcome to Larry King Live. Tonight, inside the secretive church of Scientology. Fans say it changed their lives, critics talk of mind control and dark conspiracies. Werner Erhard says the church set out to destroy him, now hear Scientology's side from church president Heber Jentzsch. Plus, how much can you get away with in a free society? Thoughts on consensual crimes from author Peter McWilliams. Now, here's Larry King.
Larry King: Good evening from Washington. Few organizations in this country appear more mysterious or arouse more speculation than the church of Scientology. It's said to be one of the world's fastest-growing religions. But few are clear about what Scientology teaches or what it stands for. Its roots go back to the 1950s, to what founder L. Ron Hubbard called a new science of the mind, Dianetics. He promised a technology for clearing your mind of painful memories. But critics of Scientology have charged the goal is profit, the motives dubious and damaging. Now, earlier this month, Werner Erhard, founder of est, which had elements of Scientology, came on Larry King Live to accuse the church of running a smear campaign against him.
[start video clip]
Werner Erhard, Founder, est: Well, Larry, I've chosen not to come to the United States at this time because, being in the U.S., I'm just too easy a target for the campaign of harassment being waged against me by the church of Scientology.
[end video clip]
Larry King: But Scientology has millions of fans, some stars, like John Travolta and Kirstie Alley. And now, the church is breaking its silence. There's a new book, What Is Scientology? - there you see it - A Guidebook to the World's Fastest Growing Religion, from Bridge Publications.
And we now welcome the president of the church, the Reverend Heber Jentzsch, here in Washington. Why have you not come forward all the time?
Reverend Heber Jentzsch, Church of Scientology: Larry, you know, I've wanted to talk about this for some time. And I think what we've had to do is put together a book which was definitive on the subject of Scientology.
Larry King: I mean, you've been around so long. Why a book now? Why not a book 20 years ago?
Heber Jentzsch: Well, there have been various books, but we really putting together the definitive study of what Scientology is and to really understand what it is [sic]. Look at this book. This is a big book. It's got a lot of pages in it. It's got a lot of information in it. But let me deal with this one thing about Werner Erhard. You know, he was here a couple weeks ago-
Larry King: Did you watch that show?
Heber Jentzsch: I saw the show. I tried to call you, by the way, but your line was busy.
Larry King: What do you-
Heber Jentzsch: Your line was busy. But, let me just talk about a couple things. I mean, first of all, for Werner to say that somehow we're preventing him from coming back to the United States, his problem really is law enforcement. After I heard that, I looked over the issue, I had some research done on it, and here is the situation. Number one, Werner still has some leans against his organization by the Internal Revenue Service, which run into millions and millions of dollars. The other area that you have to take a look at is that Werner has a real problem with the fact that his wife has not withdrawn the issue of his wife-beating, the two daughters did not withdraw the fact that one of them had been sexually abused when she was 16, the other one was raped when she was 20, and that the son was beaten by him when he was 12 years old. Those issues have not been resolved. And he was rather-
Larry King: Do you think he's hiding, or running?
Heber Jentzsch: I think his problem is law enforcement. And if he had to come back to the United States, he should deal with those issues. But there's one other thing he said, he said he didn't have any relationship to Scientology, in that show. No, no, no. I looked that over and I found out there was a book which he said, OK, this is the definitive book on Werner Erhard, 1978. And in it, he says he studied Scientology, he got a great deal of understanding about the mind from L. Ron Hubbard, the founder of Scientology and Dianetics, and it was throughout est. Well, here's the point, he took one, tiny piece of Scientology and he blew that up into something that he could use for his own personal profit. That's what he did with it. And even that was altered. Whereas, we in Scientology have all of the wisdom, all of that, you know, and the people-
Larry King: So you bear him- you never bore him ill will?
Heber Jentzsch: I disagree with him. I am really unhappy with him saying these things and trying to blame Scientology.
Larry King: But, I mean, are you shocked? He has no reason to say them. Scientology-
Heber Jentzsch: I am shocked. I am shocked. Here's the thing, here's the killing evidence. When he says that 60 Minutes is controlled by Scientology, Larry, I've done that show. There is no way we control that show. That's just absolutely ridiculous. So, he has law enforcement problems. Come back to America, that's part of his philosophy, face the music, solve it.
Larry King: Scientology isn't after anyone?
Heber Jentzsch: No, we're not after anyone.
Larry King: OK-
Heber Jentzsch: And, you know-
Larry King: -a little about you. You were a Mormon, right?
Heber Jentzsch: I grew up in the Mormon faith, when I was a kid, in Utah.
Larry King: A believing Mormon?
Heber Jentzsch: Yes, that's right, that's right.
Larry King: So you believed in many wives and other concepts of the church?
Heber Jentzsch: When I was- by the way, the Mormons don't practice that anymore. That was something which did occur for years and years, and, as a young man, until I was about 13 or 14, yeah, I thought that that was the way. But, you know, I always wanted to know, who am I? What am I doing here? You know, what are these other people doing here? Why am I here? Those questions- [crosstalk]. Pardon?
Larry King: Mormons don't leave much, their church today.
Heber Jentzsch: They probably don't. They're a wonderful group of people. But I couldn't get an answer to those questions.
Larry King: So what-
Heber Jentzsch: So I started looking. What took me to Scientology was I knew that I didn't know. I was working and- I was working in Las Vegas years and years ago, and I saw people on drugs- it was the '60s. I saw drugs. I saw people's lives getting destroyed. I saw people on methadrine [sp?], and so forth, and I said, 'Hey, that's not it. I want something-' And then I heard someone having a conversation, saying, you know, Scientology put my family back together. And that is really valuable. The guy- it was a father talking about his son. And I said, it's time for me to get involved. I went out there, got into Scientology in 1967. I've never looked back.
Larry King: Is it a religion?
Heber Jentzsch: Absolutely, because Scientology deals with the spirit. It deals-
Larry King: A group of people with a common belief.
Heber Jentzsch: A group of people with a common belief. But not- Scientology is not just belief. Scientology is actual practical laws that you can apply to yourself. You can remove those problems that you had in your life, the losses you've had in life. That's the difference. It's not just a belief system.
Larry King: What does the word mean?
Heber Jentzsch: The word comes from two words, scia [sp?], which means knowing and ology, a study of knowing. And it's about wisdom. Now, in this book, people can find out the principles of Scientology. And also, within it, it's like, what is the mind? What is the mind composed of? How does the mind work? Those questions- I had those questions all the time, Larry. Well, those are dealt with. You know, I was- when I was in college, in Utah, I had this psychologist teaching class and saying, 'When you're 30 years old, your IQ is going to crash. Your life starts to deteriorate.' Using Scientology, after I was 50, I changed my IQ 30 points up. So there is something there that people really want to know about, you know.
Larry King: All right, you have your spiritual beliefs. Why do you carry on this war against drugs, like Prozac? Why does that bother you so much?
Heber Jentzsch: Gee, Larry, you know, it's a quality of life. And that issue on Prozac, I checked with the Food and Drug Administration. And we have documents showing that the highest incidence of deaths, of suicides, of adverse reactions, of any drug in the history of the Food and Drug Administration's database is on that drug Prozac.
Larry King: They looked into it. It's also one of the most successful drugs they've ever dealt with. More people report feeling better, less suicide attempts, depressed people able to work. What I'm saying is, why- what does Scientology care about- why do you care about a drug?
Heber Jentzsch: We found there were issues of people who took that drug, like Joseph Wesbecker [sp?], who went in on the drug, and the coroner admitted that it was a contributive factor to his blowing away a bunch of people in Louisville, Kentucky in nineteen hundred and eighty-nine.
Larry King: Yeah, but millions take Prozac and don't blow people away. Why do you have a Scientology attack on it?
Heber Jentzsch: Because, Larry, here's the- here's the Food and Drug Administration-
Larry King: -it would put you out of business and that's why you attack it, because-
Heber Jentzsch: No, it would not. It would not.
Larry King: -they don't have to pay the church.
Heber Jentzsch: It would absolutely not, because what we're concerned about is, what about the persons who are on the drug, who do commit crimes, the woman who gets on the drug and bites 20 bits of flesh out of her grandmother.
Larry King: So what would you do, ban the whole drug, because some people are affected-
Heber Jentzsch: I think that the Food and Drug Administration is being disingenuous. They are not being honest when they do not put on that labeling of the drug, that it is so destructive, that there are suicidal things.
Larry King: Would you agree there are some psychiatric drugs that have done marvelously well?
Heber Jentzsch: You know, I've looked at Stelazine, Thorazine, chlorpromazine, and I've looked at the long-range effects of it and I've seen the destruction of it.
Larry King: Lithium?
Heber Jentzsch: I've looked at Valium, I've looked at Lithium. Valium, by the way, was touted as a great drug. Twenty years of the history of Valium, and by the way, in those 20 years, maybe 3,000 incidents, 28,000 in three or four years of Prozac. I spoke with- with Elders, the surgeon general-
Larry King: Joycelyn Elders.
Heber Jentzsch: Joycelyn Elders. And she said, 'Look, we are concerned about it. We had the reports. We've started a task force to look into it.' I think that it has to be done, Larry, because there are too many people destroyed by that drug.
Larry King: Let me get a break. Surgeon general has a task force looking at Prozac?
Heber Jentzsch: That's what she told me.
Larry King: We'll be right back, with Heber Jentzsch, the president of the church of Scientology. The new book is What Is Scientology?. We'll be taking your phone calls. And then, Peter McWilliams. Tomorrow night, the anniversary of the crash of Pan Am 103. And on Wednesday night, Senator Sam Nunn of Georgia. We'll be right back.
[start video clip]
Werner Erhard: And I'm saying that there are many other people in the media who have really been duped by this campaign. I mean, Scientology couldn't have been more successful than to have the success of actually getting the media to see things in the way in which they wanted the media to see things.
[end video clip]
Larry King: We're back with Heber Jentzsch. Is it Reverend Jentzsch?
Heber Jentzsch: Reverend Heber Jentzsch-
Larry King: OK.
Heber Jentzsch: -but you can call me-
Larry King: President, church of Scientology. And, what- you have the other machines that you use in helping people to- actual physical machines?
Heber Jentzsch: Yeah, there is something which we call an electrophomater [sp?], electrophameter, which is used to basically measure the area of a stress in a person's life, because, in the mind, it really can register. It has electrical energy. So-
Larry King: What about the government's charges? Why is the government always harassing you? They're raiding your books, the files, they're looking at-
Heber Jentzsch: They did that 20 years ago. But now, the Internal Revenue Service just did the most thorough examination in the history of Scientology, Larry. And they looked at Scientology with the most- I guess the most heavy examination in the history of the service. And they recognize #1 that Scientology, they said, is a religious organization, that it has religious purposes, that it has charitable purposes, and recognized all the churches and our social reform organizations across the country. That's really quite something.
Larry King: How many members do you have?
Heber Jentzsch: Larry, we have about- over eight million members, internationally.
Larry King: How old is the church?
Heber Jentzsch: The church will be 40 years old-
Larry King: That's all?
Heber Jentzsch: -in this next- this next year. And it's grown to that in that particular time because-
Larry King: So obviously you've helped a lot of people, or-
Heber Jentzsch: Larry, we helped a lot of people.
Larry King: What about the thought that you force people to come and you keep them there, and they're kind of like prisoners of the church?
Heber Jentzsch: Boy, I tell you, Larry, how do you do that?
Larry King: Help me.
Heber Jentzsch: We're in the community. The people- there are eight million people. They come to Scientology, they study it, they go back in the community. Hey, they're firemen, they're lawyers, they're doctors, they're taxicab drivers. People come into Scientology, study and go back into the community, you know.
Larry King: Can you give me quickly some of the principles of the religion?
Heber Jentzsch: First of all-
Larry King: Scientologists believe-
Heber Jentzsch: Scientologists believe that man is basically good. And they realize that man is a spiritual-
Larry King: Christianity believes that and Judaism believes it.
Heber Jentzsch: And it's a great idea that man is basically good. He may act badly. But we realize that man is basically good, that he's a spiritual being, that he has a mind, and he has a body. And the book goes into discussing what that relationship is. But, we also believe that there are basic principles that you can apply. But it's not what I say, it's not what you say. It's going to be you the individual who goes out there, and you look at Scientology, you make up your own mind about Scientology. And that really is a different- it's not a dogma. You don't have to just believe that, you know.
Larry King: Would you put it in the humanist tradition?
Heber Jentzsch: No, because we recognize the higher spiritual nature of man. But there's some good things within the humanist tradition, by the way. But we recognize the higher principle of a spiritual being, that you are a spiritual being.
Larry King: Do you deal a lot with people with problems, drug addiction and the like?
Heber Jentzsch: Well, yes, we have social reform programs. Narcanon [sp?], for example, is an international program, it's in a number of countries. On any given day, we have 1,000 hard-core addicts who are using the principles of Narcanon, means without drugs, to get off of drugs. I interviewed some people who were involved with that, and Larry, it was incredible, one of the guys who was a heavy cocaine addict says, 'Look, you've got to understand, Heber, we as cocaine addicts will do about five crimes a day, on the average, you know, hit a car, take somebody's TV in a house, or do a mugging, or so forth,' he said. Five times a day. You take 1,000 people and they are off the street as hard-core addicts. That's 5,000 crimes a day, that's 35,000 crimes a week. It's almost a million crimes a year. That's what Scientology is doing to handle the problems of drugs in this country and other countries. It's very effective. And, by the way, studies done not by us, but 78-percent success rate, where they don't go back to the drugs. Larry, that's incredible. The government program in Spain has a 2-1/2-percent success rate. We have a 78-percent success rate.
Larry King: We'll be right back with Heber Jentzsch, president of the church of Scientology. The new book is called What Is Scientology?, from Bridge Publications. We'll come back with your phone calls. Then, Peter McWilliams talks about why crimes - some of them - shouldn't be crimes. Tomorrow night, we talk about the anniversary of Pan Am 103. On Thursday night, the Muppets are here, and Santa Claus. No fooling. This is a good show. Don't go away.
Larry King: We're back with Heber Jentzsch on Larry King Live. Let's go to your phone calls. Los Angeles. Hello.
1st CALLER: [Los Angeles, California] Hi.
Larry King: Hi.
1st CALLER: [Los Angeles, California] I was wondering, you know, after the L.A. riots, there was a lot of crime, you know. Is Scientology doing anything to help heal L.A.?
Heber Jentzsch: Well, you know, that's very interesting.
Larry King: That's your base, right?
Heber Jentzsch: Pardon?
Larry King: That's your base.
Heber Jentzsch: That's our base. And, as a matter of fact, we sent a team of people down into the riot areas, and they're still there, Larry. They are still there, working with an education program, where we have been helping gang kids, we've been helping kids who potentially could go into the gangs, using the study technology of Scientology. As a matter of fact, we're able to change grade levels two and three levels with 20 hours of address. That program has grown and grown and it's continuing to grow. We have it in New York, as well and in Miami.
Larry King: How about former members - you've heard this a lot - who say that you harass people, you sell them more courses and keep them there, so to speak, you antagonize them if they want to leave? No truth at all?
Heber Jentzsch: No, Larry, people can come and go in Scientology. And that's always been the case, it always has been the case.
Larry King: Why do they pick on you?
Heber Jentzsch: Pardon?
Larry King: Why do they pick on you, then?
Heber Jentzsch: I guess-
Larry King: You don't hear about people saying, 'Boy, the synagogue made me stay.'
Heber Jentzsch: No, that's true. The synagogue probably didn't make them stay. And Scientology didn't make them stay. People come into Scientology because they want something which works in their lives, Larry.
Larry King: But you don't know why they pick on you?
Heber Jentzsch: Why they pick on us? Because I think we're effective, because we have a controversy, when we go and we attack certain areas, like psychiatry. We go head-on with that. That creates controversy.
Larry King: -psychiatry at all?
Heber Jentzsch: I don't like lobotomies. I don't like enforced drugging. I don't like-
Larry King: They still do lobotomies?
Heber Jentzsch: Yes, a thousand a year, in this country.
Larry King: Lobotomies?
Heber Jentzsch: And that is archaic, it is brutal, it is destructive of the individual.
Larry King: Milan, Italy.
Heber Jentzsch: I disagree with those.
Larry King: Milan, Italy for Heber Jentzsch. Hello.
2nd CALLER: [Milan, Italy] Yes. My question is related to the subject. I wanted to know why the church of Scientology is so much opposed to psychiatry.
Heber Jentzsch: Well, I think basically what we were saying. You have to understand that-
Larry King: OK, but let's say lobotomies-
Heber Jentzsch: -psychiatry believes that man- man is an animal. They don't believe that man is a spiritual being. And that has been the philosophy of psychiatry for a long time. We are opposed to the brutality that is visited upon the people, that they use with people in the institutions. By the way, in Italy, we have done quite a bit, Larry, to expose the psychiatric atrocities in a number of institutions in Italy.
Larry King: Do you think psychoanalysis is not effective, that nobody has been helped by it?
Heber Jentzsch: I don't say that. I say a person makes his own choice. But I say institutional psychiatry needs vast changes in it, Larry, and it's time to look at those areas where they don't force people to be treated. Scientology lets a person make up his own mind. He gets to choose what he wants in Scientology, and he gets a better life out of it, Larry. That's the point.
Larry King: New York City. Hello. I'm sorry, no, this is- New York City. Hello.
3rd CALLER: [New York, New York] Yes, this is Harry Rosenberg. My name is- and I'm Werner Erhard's brother. And I find it hard to believe that Mr. Jentzsch doesn't know about the campaign his own organization has run against Mr. Erhard, given that the L.A. Times in 1991 on a front-page article, their own agent outlined the campaign to destroy Werner's reputation. And so I would just like to know how it would be possible for him not to know-
Larry King: Hold on a second. You're Werner's brother?
3rd CALLER: [New York, New York] Yes, I am.
Larry King: OK.
Heber Jentzsch: And your name is Rosenberg?
Larry King: Did- did- yeah, I think-
Heber Jentzsch: Yeah, that was his original name, when he was- when he was- he was selling cars out on the East Coast, originally, right, before he changed his name?
Larry King: No, but that's not germane.
Heber Jentzsch: No, it's not germane.
Larry King: You were a Mormon, originally, right, you're not a Mormon-
Heber Jentzsch: Oh yeah. No, that's true. But-
Larry King: OK. What about the L.A. Times story?
Heber Jentzsch: L.A. Times story, of course, we looked at that issue, and I had a chance to check this out. And I talked to a private investigator, who was doing investigations on Werner Erhard. And- not for us, by the way. This was a private investigator, was doing something from people hired by est. And what he told me was that he was the one who was uncovering a lot of these problems with Werner Erhard. It has nothing to do with the church of Scientology. His problem, as I indicated before-
Larry King: Didn't the Times story say you were after him, though?
Heber Jentzsch: Times story tried to say we were after him. And, by the way, for him to say that we control all the media in America, that's just crazy.
Larry King: I know, but are you saying the L.A. Times story was totally wrong?
Heber Jentzsch: No. I am saying it's wrong. I went to the L.A. Times and we dealt with that issue and showed where it was wrong. We're not the ones running a campaign against Werner Erhard.
Larry King: You have nothing against his- this gentleman's brother?
Heber Jentzsch: I have nothing against him.
Larry King: He comes back, he's safe-
Heber Jentzsch: No, you, sir, if you want- if Werner wants to come back and he wants to talk to us, we're always willing to talk to people. But Werner's problem, as I indicated before, really is that he has a problem with law enforcement and he is going to have to deal with that. I can't deal with-
Larry King: Are you still on the phone?
3rd CALLER: [New York, New York] There is no- Mr. Jentzsch, there is no law enforcement in the United States that's after Werner Erhard. You are continuing to do what you've done for years now. There is no law enforcement. How do you- how do you know that there's law enforcement?
Heber Jentzsch: OK, well, I brought up the-
Larry King: There's a charge pending?
Heber Jentzsch: There's a charge pending. And the IRS still has-
Larry King: The IRS hasn't tried to get you-
Heber Jentzsch: The IRS is still trying to collect money from Werner Erhard. That issue is still there.
Larry King: But if he comes back, what are they going to do, drag it off his body? I mean, if the money is not here, they can't- is it criminal?
Heber Jentzsch: Well, the point is, they have a system. They're going to have to deal with that, he's going to have to deal with that. That has nothing to do with us.
Larry King: And caller, you are saying there are no charges pending against your brother?
3rd CALLER: [New York, New York] None, Larry.
Heber Jentzsch: Nothing with the IRS? All of that is resolved?
Larry King: All right, well then why- all right, now based on what Heber said here tonight, why don't you call Werner and tell him to come back, because there are no- you say there are no charges against him, and Heber says the church of Scientology means him no harm.
3rd CALLER: [New York, New York] Larry-
Heber Jentzsch: That's exactly right. He was saying on the show that he wanted to talk to us.
Larry King: Werner told us that he misses home.
Heber Jentzsch: Sure.
Larry King: Why not ask him to come home?
Heber Jentzsch: That's right.
3rd CALLER: [New York, New York] Very good.
Heber Jentzsch: And we'll talk to him if he wants to talk to him [sic]. But again, as I say-
Larry King: I'll tell you what-
Heber Jentzsch: -he has to deal with his own problems.
Larry King: I'll guarantee you something, sir, if you can get Werner to come home, we'll get Heber to come here, they can both sit on this show.
3rd CALLER: [New York, New York] OK, Larry.
Larry King: OK?
3rd CALLER: [New York, New York] Yeah.
Heber Jentzsch: Well, Larry, you and I can sit down and with Werner, we'll talk to him.
Larry King: All right, you've got it. London, England. Hello.
4th CALLER: [London, England] Hello. We had a- we had a newspaper article recently here in London, in the Sunday Telegraph, saying that the church of Scientology was trying to take over Hollywood, and half the celebrities in Hollywood are Scientologists. Is this true?
Larry King: Half?
Heber Jentzsch: Well, half the celebrities. I think we're talking to the man here who can answer that question for you. You've interviewed almost all the celebrities. There are a number of celebrities who are in Scientology, but certainly not half the celebrities.
Larry King: What usually attracts people? Word of mouth?
Heber Jentzsch: Well, because you know, I think, here's the thing, Scientology works. And they can make up their own mind about its workability. And number two, in a world out there of sex, of problems, you know, in terms of careers, and so forth, celebrities want something that works beyond that. They also want to be involved in something which helps the society. You take Kirstie Alley and her Narcanon program out in Chalako [sp?], helping Native Americans get off of drugs. That's Kirstie Alley. Sure, there are a lot of people who have joined Scientology, who are celebrities, and by golly, they're doing very, very, very well. Why? Because it has workable principles, and not just a belief system. And they can- look, get this book, you can look at it and make up your own mind.
Larry King: I interviewed L. Ron Hubbard once, as I told you.
Heber Jentzsch: Yeah.
Larry King: In the '60s, in Miami. Did he know- did he have any idea that this would get this big?
Heber Jentzsch: I believe he knew that it would get this big, Larry, because he knew that Scientology was something which would help mankind. He had been an engineer, and so, he wanted workable principles about what Scientology is. And that's what an engineer has to have. Hey, it has to work. Well, Scientology is workable. It is an incredible technology. But, again, not what I say. He says this, what's true for you is true for you. And that's the thing, you as an individual, you try Scientology. Look at this book. There are incredible things about the mind in there, and so clearly delineated. But you make up your own mind.
Larry King: We'll come back with some more moments with Heber Jentzsch, the president of the church of Scientology, and then Peter McWilliams talks about his new book which deals with crimes that maybe shouldn't be crimes. Don't go away.
[start video clip]
Werner Erhard: Since L. Ron Hubbard has declared me as an enemy of the church of Scientology and said that I was fair game- they have a policy called fair game, which allows them to use any methods to get at someone. Unfortunately, he's passed away, but his word is still there. And I suppose that the church still honors his word.
[end video clip]
Larry King: We're back on Larry King Live with Heber Jentzsch, the president of the church of Scientology. The new book is What Is Scientology? A couple more calls. Daytona Beach, Florida. Hello.
5th CALLER: [Daytona Beach, Florida] Hello. I'd like to ask him a question.
Larry King: Sure.
5th CALLER: [Daytona Beach, Florida] Why is Scientology so money-oriented? In other words, there are members of Scientology who get so many unsolicited pieces of literature or cassettes, or whatever.
Larry King: Are you always pitching for dollars?
Heber Jentzsch: No, that's not true. I mean, first of all, people who find out that Scientology is extremely valuable to them- I had a fellow say to me, 'You know, over the years, I've contributed a great deal to Scientology.' And he said, 'You know, Heber, if you said to me that I could have all the money I've contributed over the last 25 years back but that I would be the same as I was the day I walked in,' and said, 'You can't do that to me. It's unfair.' And then another interviewer said to me one time, 'Hey, why is it that people who are not in Scientology complain about the prices?' No, no, no, people find Scientology very, very valuable. And that's why they contribute to Scientology, because it works.
Larry King: What if you can't afford it?
Heber Jentzsch: Well, there are certainly free courses in Scientology. People can come in. And I say this, look, get the book yourself. I mean, the guidebook to- [crosstalk]. Yeah, the fastest-growing religion. Get the book, take a look at it. You make up your own mind. You decide whether or not this is the religion for you.
Larry King: But I mean, you would help indigents?
Heber Jentzsch: Absolutely. And we do.
Larry King: Los Angeles. Hello.
6th CALLER: [Los Angeles, California] Hello.
Larry King: Yes.
6th CALLER: [Los Angeles, California] Reverend Jentzsch-
Heber Jentzsch: Yes.
6th CALLER: [Los Angeles, California] -there's a lot of controversy right now on how the government treats religions groups, and- for example, Waco. Where do you draw the line between religious freedom rights and protecting the public from actual dangers from such groups?
Heber Jentzsch: Well, I had the opportunity to be back here, you know, when the President had a signing of the religious freedom restoration act. We worked with 65 other different religions on that issue, to restore religious freedom. I think where you draw the line is that the laws are there to protect the people and they already exist. But I don't think that you can start attacking people for their religion. This is America. And people who are of all faiths, we've worked together with those faiths. That was Catholics, that was Jews, that was Baptists, and so forth. Scientology has arrived in the mainstream some years ago. So, we're concerned about helping people.
Larry King: Mountainview, California. Hello.
7th CALLER: [Mountainview, California] Yes. Every day in the news, there are horror stories about urban troubles, from drugs, murder to homelessness. And I've seen other churches addressing these social problems. But, does the church of Scientology have hands-on community programs to handle these problems?
Heber Jentzsch: Absolutely. I mean, the stuff we're doing to handle drugs, the stuff we're doing to handle education- these are tremendous programs which have a tremendous effect. I mean, the fact that we can take people off of drugs and that they can have- live good lives and come back and be contributing members to the society, that's what Scientology is about. We have, per capita, the most effective social reform programs and assistance programs in the world.
Larry King: Heber, thanks for coming. Look forward to a return visit.
Heber Jentzsch: Larry, really a pleasure. We'll talk again.
Larry King: Heber Jentzsch. The book is What Is Scientology? Peter McWilliams is next. His new book, Ain't Nobody's Business If You Do. Don't go away.