Religion News Report
Warning on Jedi email campaign
The Age (Australia), Apr. 5, 2001
Thousands of people could face big fines if they participate in an email campaign to describe themselves as Jedi Knights on the upcoming official census.
The head of the Australian Bureau of Statistics census program, John Struik, today said that anyone who falsely provides information on a census faces a $1000 fine.
An email that has circulated widely in the past few days encourages Australians to identify their religion as "Jedi" in a national census to be held on August 7.
"If there are enough people in the country, about 10,000, who put down the same religion, it becomes a fully recognised and legal religion," the email says.
Jedi Knights are a fictional group made popular in Star Wars movies.
Mr Struik said to be recognised as a religion a formal organisational structure with a belief system must be demonstrated.
"If we get 10,000 Jedis they will go down as no official religion," he said.