BETHANY MANDEL: The Troubling Connections between Scientology and the Nation of Islam.

And now, Scientology and the Nation of Islam are working together even more closely. An independent Scientology news service, @IndieScieNews, first tipped me off to the connection. On October 20, the Church of Scientology honored the Nation of Islam’s Tony Muhammed with its Freedom Award in Inglewood, Calif., in recognition of his “humanitarian” efforts. What, exactly, are those efforts? Muhammed travels the world showing a documentary on vaccines, claiming they cause autism. Just this week, Nation of Islam members held a blessing and naming ceremony for Tony Muhammed at the Scientology Land Base Chapel in Clearwater, Fla.

The individual behind IndieScientologyNews told me:

The extent of the integration of Scientology into the Nation of Islam is demonstrated by the fact that members of the Nation of Islam are not only practicing the religion of Scientology, they are also becoming Ministers and Ministers-in-Training of the Church of Scientology.

The connection between the two groups goes far deeper than just a gala or a naming ceremony. One of the stars of Leah Remini’s docuseries, Aaron Smith-Levin, laid out the financial connection and the incentive for Nation of Islam members to become involved in the Church of Scientology, and vice versa.

Read the whole thing.