I may as well head off my morning television at the past, because I’m pretty sure tomorrow’s Today show will be nothing but highlights and segments and segments of highlights of the weirdo interview that took place between Matt Lauer and Tom Cruise this past week, the bulk of which has to do with this odd as hell exchange:
We asked Cruise to explain his recent comments regarding Brooke Shields. Cruise created a firestorm when he criticized Shields for revealing that she went into therapy and took antidepressants to deal with her postpartum depression. Cruise has said that, as a Scientologist, he doesn’t believe in psychiatric medicine.
Cruise: I’ve never agreed with psychiatry, ever. Before I was a Scientologist I never agreed with psychiatry. And when I started studying the history of psychiatry, I understood more and more why I didn’t believe in psychology.
And as far as the Brooke Shields thing, look, you got to understand, I really care about Brooke Shields. I think, here’s a wonderful and talented woman. And I want to see her do well. And I know that psychiatry is a pseudo science.
Lauer: But Tom, if she said that this particular thing helped her feel better, whether it was the antidepressants or going to a counselor or psychiatrist, isn’t that enough?
Cruise: Matt, you have to understand this. Here we are today, where I talk out against drugs and psychiatric abuses of electric shocking people, okay, against their will, of drugging children with them not knowing the effects of these drugs. Do you know what Aderol is? Do you know Ritalin? Do you know now that Ritalin is a street drug? Do you understand that?
Lauer: The difference is —
Cruise: No, no, Matt.
Lauer: This wasn’t against her will, though.
Cruise: Matt, Matt, Matt, Matt —
Lauer: But this wasn’t against her will.
Cruise: Matt, I’m asking you a question.
Lauer: I understand there’s abuse of all of these things.
Cruise: No, you see. Here’s the problem. You don’t know the history of psychiatry. I do.
Unfortunately for us, like most journalists who walk straight into a gold mine these days, Matt royally blew his opportunity for a follow up. Cruise just said that he knows the history of psychiatry, so why not ask him to summarize it for us? He just qualified himself as an expert on the subject.
Fortunately for Tom (not to mention Steven Spielberg, whose War of the Worlds depends to some degree on the salability of the one-day hunk), there is no need to answer such an obvious question. Because if he did get into the “history” of why Scientology is so anti-psychiatry, America would be raising a very curious eyebrow and probably shouting out a simultaneous “WTF!?” to their once-beloved box office star.
Consider Scientology doctrine concerning Xenu, a galactic being roughly equivalent to Zeus, and the historical impact of his actions. And, no kids, I’m not making any of the following up. Wiki it yourself and see.
Xenu was about to be deposed from power, so he devised a plot to eliminate the excess population from his dominions. With the assistance of “renegades”, he defeated the populace and the “Loyal Officers”, a force for good that was opposed to Xenu. Then, with the assistance of psychiatrists, he summoned billions of people to paralyse them with injections of alcohol and glycol, under the pretense that they were being called for “income tax inspections.” The kidnapped populace was loaded into space planes for transport to the site of extermination, the planet of Teegeeack (Earth). The space planes were exact copies of Douglas DC-8s, “except the DC-8 had fans, propellers on it and the space plane didn’t.”
I was just trying to get some perspective on what Scientology is all about and why it views psychiatry the way it does, but anybody with half a brain ought to be able to pull the reigns on the horse by the time they get to Xenu. This stuff is completely whacked!
Please, if Tom Cruise is any where near talking about Teegeeack, or R6 implants, or space planes that look like Douglas DC-8 airplanes, do me a favor and Tivo it for me, because I like watching a lunatic rant and rave as much as the next guy.
Now, to be fair, I think it’s only right to take a cautious approach towards drugs as part of any therapy, especially depression or any mental diagnosis having to do with children. I personally believe that the human brain is as fragile as it is unboundedly healable. So, in most cases, even serious depression, I believe a non-medicated “talk” therapy is the best first step to take. If that doesn’t work, maybe certain medications are worth looking into. But I’m certainly willing to give you the full disclosure on the subject. I don’t know the history of psychiatry and I don’t pretend to.
But I do know somebody who does. Anybody care to ask him why?
Update: And just because… Tom Cruise Kills Oprah