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Atlantic & Scientology: What Did They Do Wrong?

Are you following the deal over The Atlanticrunning a big advertorial by the Church of Scientology, then taking it down about 12 hours later, after lots of criticism? I was not able to read the Scientology advertorial — which was clearly labeled as such, it appears — but in principle, I can’t see what the big deal is. What did The Atlantic do wrong? I think the Church of Scientology is a menacing freakshow cult, but why is it off-limits for them to buy an online ad in a magazine? What am I missing here? The Atlantic has a right to set its own parameters for the advertising it accepts, but it is not clear to me why an ad purchased by the Church of Scientology is so obviously objectionable that it must not be allowed to appear. Was the content offensive? What’s going on here? Help me out.

about the author

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. He has written and edited for the New York Post, The Dallas Morning News, National Review, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the Washington Times, and the Baton Rouge Advocate. Rod’s commentary has been published in The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, the Weekly Standard, Beliefnet, and Real Simple, among other publications, and he has appeared on NPR, ABC News, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and the BBC. He lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with his wife Julie and their three children. He has also written four books, The Little Way of Ruthie Leming, Crunchy Cons, How Dante Can Save Your Life, and The Benedict Option.

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