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Ouster of Scientology softball team sought

Title: Ouster of Scientology softball team sought
Date: Saturday, 17 May 1980
Publisher: St. Petersburg Times (Florida)
Main source: news.google.com

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CLEARWATER — The American Softball Association may be asked to strip the Church of Scientology of eligibility to play in the city of Clearwater-sponsored church softball league.

Jim Altaffer, the association's Metro Commissioner, said the group of Clearwater-area church representatives wants the association to declassify the Scientology team as a church team and place it in the city's regular non-religious city league.

The churches believe that Scientology is not a bona fide religion. The Scientologists say they are and add that they won't play in the regular city league.

The Scientologists have a 5-0 record in "A" Division play because of a boycott against the team by all other division teams. Now some of the other churches are concerned because the Scientologists stand to be automatic champions and represent the city in the Metro Tournament later this year.

Altaffer said, however, that the national association will not take any action on the complaint unless it has a positive recommendation from the city of Clearwater.

City officials say the Scientologists will remain in the church league until the courts decide if Scientology is a religion.