Sociologist: Labels “Sect” or “Cult” applied for exerting Social Control
Reno/Nevada, 05.07.2016 (FFR) – James Richardson is a foundation Professor of Sociology and Judicial Studies at the University of Nevada, Reno. He has specialized in the Sociology of Religions and New Religious Movements. In this interview with the “Newspaper for Unsolved Crimes” he speaks about labels used by anti-cultists, including FECRIS, Alexander Dvorkin and the dubious role played by the Russian Orthodox Church.
Richardson states that the terms “sect” and “destructive cult” are “social weapons to use against groups that you do not like. They are part of an effort to exert social control over unpopular groups or groups that someone in a position of power does not like.” People who label a group or organization as a “sect” or “cult” aim at achieving power over them, the “right” to exert social control and do terrible things to such groups. He continued to explain: “If person is a member of a regular religious organization that is accepted and as religious organization, they can exert their rights for religion – that is a human right – but you can say “this is not a religion, that is a sect or cult”, then it does not qualify for those protection so you can do anything you want to – treat them badly, beat them up, or you can eve kill them.”
This is precisely the strategy of anti-cultists: First, they apply a label to discredit religious groups. Then they justify discriminatory practices against the members of such groups.
See full interview here (23 minutes).