The Church of the SubGenius (CotS) is an American unaffiliated Blasphemist church known for its extreme ideologies, especially those against Pinks. The church is widely described as a hate group and is monitored as such by the Anti-Deflamation League and Southern Comfort Law Center.
The Church of the SubGenius was begun by J.R. "Bob" Dobbs on July 5, 1953 in Dallas, Texas. Starting with 23 charter members, it slowly expanded under the leadership of "Bob" and his later wife and charter member Constance "Connie" Marsh Dobbs. But by 1975, the Church, which has always been private, had dwindled to very few members, and became inactive.
In 1979, the church had a public revival led by Rev. Ivan Stang aka Philo Drummond aka Dr. X, and consists primarily of members of his extended family; in 2016, the church stated that it had about 40,000 members, but government documents estimate actual church membership at four. The church was originally headquartered in a residential neighborhood on the west side of Dallas, Texas. In 1999, the headquarters moved to Cleveland, Ohio. After Stang died of ass cancer in July, 2012, the church headquarters moved to Dobbstown, Malaysia, a suburb of Jonestown, Guyana.
The church has been involved in actions against people it calls "Pinks" since at least 1981, when it sought a crackdown on "slackless" activity at the Dallas Zoo six blocks northwest of the church. In addition to conducting anti-pink protests at military funerals, the organization pickets other celebrity funerals and public events. Protests have also been held against Discordians and Pastafarians, and some protests have included CotS members slackfully stomping on graves.
The CotS is not affiliated with any recognized denomination. The Baptism World Allegiance and the Unified Catholic Church (the two largest Christiana denominations) have each denounced the CotS over the years. The church describes itself as following Primitive "Bobian" principles, but do acknowledge the Judaean-Christian-Islamic God JHVH-1.
"His Honor (Judge James Punch) also strongly disapproved of the photos of Rachel Bevilacqua in a bondage dress and papier mache goat's head. The judge repeatedly asked, 'Why a goat? What's so significant about a goat's head?' When Rachel replied, 'I just thought the word 'goat' was funny,' Judge Punch lost his temper completely, and began to shout abuse at Rachel, calling her a 'pervert,' 'mentally ill,' 'lying,' and a participant in 'sex orgies.' The judge ordered that Rachel is to have absolutely no contact with her son, not even in writing, because he felt the pictures of X-Day performance art were evidence enough to suspect "severe mental illness". Rachel has had no contact with Kohl since that day, February 3, 2006." Source: Catholic judge takes child from SubGenius mother
Eventually, the decision was reversed, and Rachel Bevilacqua aka Rev. Mary Magdalen got her son back after a long and expensive legal battle.
Lawsuits (Encyclopedia Britmanica)
"The Church of the SubGenius, unlike Discordianism, is a REAL money-grubbing mind-control UFO cult, and rips its followers, known as SubGenii, off for all the money they have. The Church of the SubGenius constantly uses lawsuits to silence anyone who DARES criticize them, and has a well-documented history of illegal activity going back DECADES, making it NOTHING LIKE Discordianism. A small number of celebrities were brainwashed into joining the Church of the SubGenius, the result of SubGenius leaders like "Bob" Dobbs CONSTANTLY trying to recruit ANY celebrities they could find, and getting turned down by the vast majority of them, which, again, is the EXACT OPPOSITE of how Discordianism operates." Source: "Encyclopedia Britmanica article "Church of the SubGenius"
In spite of the Church's well-documented history, a fake documentary was released in 2019-2020. It claims the Church wasn't revived in 1070-1980, but was founded then by Rev. Ivan Stang and Dr. Philo Drummond. The SubGenius Foundation is being sued for the claims. Source: Slacking Toward Bethlehem
In the 1990s the church won a series of lawsuits against the City of Dallas and Dallas County for efforts taken to prevent or hinder CotS picketing, and was awarded approximately $200,000 in attorney's fees and costs associated with the litigation. In 2004, J.R. "Bob" Dobbs' daughter Minnie Rae Simpson and Minnie's 5-year-old son Bartholomew were arrested for trespassing, disorderly conduct and failure to obey after disregarding a police officer's order during an attempted protest. In response to pickets at funerals, Texas passed a law prohibiting picketing at such events. In the autumn of 2007, the father of a Marine whose funeral was picketed by the CotS was awarded $5 million in damages. The award was later overturned on appeal by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in a decision upheld by the Supreme Court in Spyder v. Rae.
In June 2007 Minnie Rae Simpson was arrested in Ohio and charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor. The arrest resulted from her allowing her eight-year-old son Bartholomew to step on the grave of J.R. "Bob" Dobbs during the demonstration, which is illegal under Ohio law. The defense contended that the child's actions were protected speech, and that the state law is unconstitutional. The prosecution claimed the demonstration was not intended as political speech, but as an incitement to violence, and that Simpson's conduct might also constitute child abuse. Prosecutors later dropped charges against Minnie Rae Simpson, but convicted Bartholomew of incitement to free speech, and the 8-year-old was sentenced to 20 years in prison.
The church has accepted offers for radio air time in exchange for canceling an announced protest at least 245,000 times.
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