Nationally it's Gay Marriage, Locally it's Scientology: How Tolerant is Sandy Springs?

Folks around the country have debated Chick-fil-A owner Dan Cathy's comments on gay marriage. But Sandy Springs has had its own controversies lately. We're asking how tolerant is the community?


There’s been a lot of talk on tolerance and rights over the past week. The word “Tolerance” has been stirred up since .

Increasingly folks who support and oppose gay marriage and controversial religious or social issues, say folks should be able to agree to disagree.

Is Sandy Springs a tolerant community?

Jim, who is gay and commented on wrote in part: "...As a gay person, yes I find Cathy's comments offensive, but I will defend his right to say them. I find it offensive that our country doesn't honor all loving, committed relationships with the same rights, protections and benefits..."

Similar to the rest of the country, Sandy Springs has had its own controversies recently with talk of a Gwinnett Tech campus, apartment communities being razed in the future, and the coming.

While many folks cite parking as the reason for opposing a Church of Scientology location in Sandy Springs. Numerous commenters on Patch are not comfortable with the church.

Earlier this month, before modification conditions to expand an office building into a church at Glenridge Drive and Roswell Road, Church of Scientology attorney, Woody Galloway addressed the question of whether the church is welcome here. He said, "If it’s about keeping the Church of Scientology out of Sandy Springs, then we can’t address that because the church has a right to be here.”

What do you think? Is Sandy Springs a tolerant community? Take our poll. Tell us in the comments.

Joan Pressman July 31, 2012 at 11:53 AM
I can answer yes to all of the survey questions. Yes, Sandy Springs welcomes people of different beliefs and customs. Yes, Sandy Springs residents believe diversity doesn't belong here. Lastly, yes, it is complicated. For the most part, there are people who are frightened by what they don't know and don't understand. Nothing new in this, it goes back thousands of years. History shows us this in many cases. Injustices were done to the Indians by the "White man" From "Swastika to Jim Crow" shows intolerance towards the Jewish people, and there is also the history of slavery in this country. Some of the instances I mention may seem large in relation to what is happening here in Sandy Springs, however it starts small, then grows. I do agree that diversity should be embraced. I don't have to agree with you, you don't have to agree with me. we can agree to disagree and still respect one another. We live in a country, land of the free. If we don't understand something, let's leearn about it before we judge.
Dwight Geiger July 31, 2012 at 12:54 PM
If you allow a cult like scientology into your community then expect the worst of everything that can happen.Visit the village voice to learn about this money grubbing cult before you make a decision.
Lisa July 31, 2012 at 01:52 PM
Sorry Joan, Scientology does not deserve to be compared to the struggles of Native American, Jews or Black Americans. Although Scientology would love the comparison. They boastfully claim religious bigotry in order to silence complaints about their criminal behavior. There is nothing intolerant or bigoted about not wanting a greed-driven cult that operates as an underground crime organization in our community. And we shouldn't feel bad about calling a criminal a criminal. But don't take my word for it. Dwight, is right. Educate yourself. Google "Scientology" and see for yourself. But you better set aside the whole weekend for it because it is a riveting read about greed, corruption, family disconnection, child labor violations, slavery (yes, I'm calling it that), criminal harassment, and a whole host of other crimes. Take your own advice Joan, learn about it before you judge.
Le Unc July 31, 2012 at 01:52 PM
Like many, I have learned moar than enough to know that scientology eventually ruins people. Google is our friend No wonder scientology hates the Internet
Get A Clue July 31, 2012 at 05:16 PM
I live in L.A. I CANNOT believe, with all the info available on the internet, that your community would welcome this cult into your community. Tolerance/religious freedom really does not apply in this case. As Scientologists like to say, "read a book!" Janet Reitman's "Inside Scientology" would be a great place to start.
dean fox July 31, 2012 at 06:59 PM
I understand the people of Sandy Springs not wanting part of the incidious church of scientology in their midsts. What I cannot understand is why the church of scientology insist on forcing itself into a community that so obviously doesn't want them. Is it simple bull headed arrogance? Certainly Tom Cruise has exhibited this trait of the church of scientology before. Do they seriously believe that the community will accept them once they open their doors? Where do they expect to get parishoners? Are they so dense as to think their is a "silent majority" desperate for a church of scientology? Ok it claims to be a church but it sure sells a lot of stuff and if I were selling stuff I would want to set up where people wanted to buy it. Church of Scientology are just being stupid.
I Love Sandy Springs July 31, 2012 at 10:42 PM
Heck yes it is tolerant. Look at the property values of the parts of town that have high minority concentrations in their public elementary school. We have a lot of non-church goers in Sandy Springs and they are agnostic about a lot of topics, not just religion. I do not find Sandy Springs residents to be "tolerant" because of political correctness, but because many of us have been around the block or the world a few times and we have seen that there is no standard answer for any topic. With that said, eat more chicken.
I Love Sandy Springs July 31, 2012 at 10:45 PM
There is a lot of untruthful information about a lot of positive things posted on the web. Without giving away who I am, I can assure you that I find misinformation on lots of things. But, Scientology was described to me as a cult 25 years ago when going to youth group at an Episcopal Church. If the tolerant Episcopalians are calling it a cult, it must be true.
Joan Pressman August 01, 2012 at 12:30 AM
Well thanks y'all. some good stimulated talk going on here. Isn't it a wonderful world when people can agree to disagree. Hopefully still respect one another. Thanks for your comments regarding my response. I definitely will study it further.
Dwight Geiger August 01, 2012 at 01:22 AM
Any town or community that allows a cult like scientology to operate is only headed for disaster.Their whole premise is to take your money and control your mind.They are a crimiinal cult.Katie Holmes escaped to protect her daughter from this and I admire her for it.The more people that investigate this ugly money grubbing cult the more they will understand.
Dwight Geiger August 01, 2012 at 01:42 AM
dean,you have it right.Scientology has many buildings that are empty and this is because they are trying to convince people that they are growing.IT'S not working,they lose members daily because people are finally understanding how evil this cult has always been.IF you care about people,get involved research scientology and voice your thoughts.Village voice is a great place to start.
Dwight Geiger August 01, 2012 at 02:26 AM
Lisa,thank you for that great post.I hope people will read it.
markle Einst August 01, 2012 at 04:15 AM
Wrong, almost everyone knows Scientology is a criminal cult that destroys lives. I have no respect for scientology. It was created as a scam to rip people off, steal their money and their life. Everyone should stay away from this poisonous group and read the articles on the internet. Fact all the pro COS articles on the internet are written by COS staff, mostly their own gestappo called OSA.
I Love Sandy Springs August 01, 2012 at 09:25 PM
I am glad that the boogie man is associated with liberal Hollywood versus conservative Mormonism. "During his presidential years, Clinton was influenced by the CoS. In 1997, he met John Travolta and was delighted: "he said he wanted to help me with the Scientology situation in Germany." It is known Clinton had a roommate years ago who was a Scientologist, and had really liked him. He may also have wanted a positive portrayal of the president in the movie Primary Colors. Clinton assigned national security adviser Samuel Richard "Sandy" Berger to the Scientology problem. In New Year 2000, he sent a greetings message to Scientologists, thanking them for all your efforts to promote [religious freedom] and to build communities united in understanding, compassion and mutual respect." He also wrote an article for Freedom Magazine, Scientology's infamous propaganda magazine."


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