Religious fundamentalism and quackery is an unholy combination. Christine Daniel, an LA-based Pentecostal minister, used her position as minister to earn the trust of patients on medical issues (yeah, many people haven’t really been taught the minimal critical thinking skills required to survive and thrive in a difficult world), and then used that trust to peddle (e.g. on the Trinity Broadcasting Network show Praise the Lord) “specially-prepared” herbal supplements that, according to her, could treat a wide variety of diseases including cancer, multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease with a success rate as high as 80 percent. So, Daniel told her patients to stop their chemotherapy and other conventional therapies for cancer and instead send her $5,000 apiece to use her herbal cancer cure “C-Extract” (a chemical analysis showed that it consisted of a sunscreen preservative and beef extract). Over the course of a few years, she made over $1 million on the herbal cancer treatment, in addition to a heat machine that, according to her, would shrink tumors. Needless to say, it couldn’t. According to the original prosecution, at least 55 people used Dr. Daniel’s concoctions, and at least three dozen died after having rejected conventional cancer care.
However, in what must be said to be an unusual turn of events when it comes to faith healers, Daniel was actually convicted of several crimes including wire fraud, tax evasion and witness tampering and sentenced to 14 years in federal prison and ordered to repay over $1 million that she took from clients.
On her website Daniel also claimed to have witnessed a dead child being raised from the dead through the power of prayer, and she bragged about having been the “Mathematical Decoder of the secret Code embedded in the Davinci’s Code name” (don’t know; don’t want to know). Not particularly surprisingly, Daniel is also a creationist, having even written a book called My Cousins the Apes! Are You Serious? that challenges Ray Comfort for argumentative sophistication. According to the blurb, the book “reviews the hilarious evolution theory from a medical doctor’s point of view. It goes into detail to show the complexity of the human body. If apes became humans, where did the first ape come from? Why are we not seeing more apes becoming humans? How did the animals decide which one would be male and which one would be female?” Yeah, if you gotta ask that question, you ain’t never gonna know, I think.
Diagnosis: Insane monster. We wouldn’t be surprised if she actually really believed her claims, but that wouldn’t really make much of a difference. An utterly corrupted, repugnant excuse for a human being. Hopefully neutralized, but we suspect that there are plenty of people ready to take her place.