Where prejudice exists it always discolors our thoughts -Mark Twain
The Church of Scientology has a strong interest in aligning itself with charitable and social-betterment organizations. In this way, its image is enhanced and its way to "clearing the planet" is eased.
L. Ron Hubbard describes Scientology's goals in confidential Flag Order 1890 called "Zones of Action", written 26 March 1969. In this "3 pronged all out attack, carefully studied out as the important zones to give us final victory", major target number 3 is:
Contact and make friends with and organize all minority groups until we have the biggest group on the planet. By cheering them up in their defense and attack actions, organizing an International Minority Group organization, feeding them out Gung Ho and PRO policies, making friends with even the biggest enemies of the West, we will be able to avert Fascism not taking over the West.
This policy has been applied frequently and often with good success, as demonstrated by the NAACP awards that the Church received in 1997. Legitimate minority social programs have seen active participation by Scientologists or have had Scientology "Gung Ho" groups join with their organizations to work in or with minority communities.
Examples of Scientology's attempts to curry favor with minorities:
"So Scientology's Tampa [Florida] church is leading a new expansion in Florida, with plans for about a half-dozen Life Improvement Centers in the next year. The church aims to expand its outreach into smaller towns and among the black and Hispanic communities, which critics say is an effort to make inroads among those with little knowledge of its controversial past."
-Baird Helgeson and Ray Rayes, "Scientologists Spreading Into Plant City, Beyond ", The Tampa Tribune/Tampa Bay Online (TBO.com) News, 9 July 2006
"It's bad enough that treatment [of psychological problems] disparities exist on their own. But the cultural mistrust that keeps blacks from treament has been successfully fueled by the Church of Scientology. [Carl C.] Bell [M.D.] is particularly distressed that Scientology has specifically targeted black communities with its anti-psychiatry message. 'They are forever pumping into the black community scare tactics, that there's a genocidal plot to put black children on Ritalin, there's a genocidal plot to put black people on antidepressant medication.'"
-Hara Estroff Marano, "Race and Mental Health Disparity ", Psychology Today, September 2003
"In recent years, Applied Scholastics has targeted predominantly minority schools, where many students tend to do poorly on standardized tests. Applied Scholastics considers these schools fertile ground because campus administrators are willing to try new approaches to improve scores."
-Joel Sappel and Robert W. Welkos, Los Angeles Times, "The Scientology Story: Reaching into Society ", 27 June 1990.
Education is one of the Church's main thrusts and, as W. E. B. DuBois emphasized, it is of great importance to minorities:
Of all the civil rights for which the world has struggled and fought for five thousand years, the right to learn is undoubtedly the most fundamental.
-W.E.B. DuBois, "The Freedom to Learn", Midwest Journal 2, Winter 1949