The Uniting of Races ... Credit the Watchtower

by The wanderer 44 Replies latest jw friends

  • garybuss

    Maybe it's easy to unite the races when they can divide the classes.

  • Undecided

    I don't know if I'm somewhat raciest or not. My grand-daughter is dating a black man and he seems OK to me. I don't like the black culture of the young people, the music is sickening. Rap is not very moral. The black youth is more raciest than the whites and have caused problems in the school system.

    I don't like the Mexican infusion of the USA. They think they can just come in and take over. They don't seem to care at all about the legal requirements of immigrating here. They take advantage of the welfare and medicare system and don't pay taxes. It is getting to be a problem with the gangs and crooks that come over. Of course there are good Mexicans here also, across the street from me. They rented my house next door, my daughter's house next door, but don't live there now.

    I don't know how I feel about all this stuff.

    Ken P.

  • rebel8

    I did not personally observe much racism in the org; however.....since the wts is so keen on the origins of things, let's check out their history on prejudice and see how they measure up. <-----Check out my brochure about wts' history of racism/sexism there. If such prejudices are wrong, then surely a loving god would never allow his one and only true religion to be so far off the mark.

  • chiddy

    I find it strange to believe there are so many afro american jw's when it is clear that the wts is steeped in institutionalised racism , the fact that there were never any black members of the gb and very few co/do's(if any certainly none in the uk) and the general view that blacks have been, and still are very much second class citizens in the wts.

  • lilybird

    Well, there was not really any open racism in our congregations here in canada when I attended in the 1970's, but when I was engaged to marry my husband who is black Jamaican born in England but raised in Canada, an elder in our congregation who was the father of my best friend, asked me if I would soon have a ring pierced thru my nose. I couldn't believe these words came out of his mouth, he tried to laugh it off as a bad joke as I stared in complete disbelief at him. I just shook my head and walked away. There is racism, they are just programmed to not talk about it.

    My husband and I also remember a Watchtower or Awake from the 1970's, I can't remember the article, but it discouraged marriage between "different races" as life was enough struggle as a JW and it would make staying loyal to JAh that much harder.. Does anyone remember this article??

  • johnny cip
    johnny cip


  • Gilberto

    I come from an area of the country that is predominantly white. I cannot remember anyone I went to school with who was non-white except one boy half Indian. I would say I was guilty of racial prejudice. I moved to an area of the country which is very diverse. I became a JW here. I belonged to only one congregation and I would say that my attitude towards different races has completely changed. I would say that I never noticed racism in the congregation. Is it because I am white? I don't think so as I am acutely aware of racism in the wider community. I have a number of Africans working for me and I know how they are treated. Also, being white other white people seem to be happy to make racist comments in conversation.

    That in mind I was very shocked when I found on the Quotes website articles that showed the Watchtower was indeed very Racist.

    The site is still down so here are a few quotes (I downloaded the site prior)

    (Rebel8 the link to your site is not working)

    *** Awake! Oct. 8, 1977 p.29 What Is the Bible's View? Are Blacks Cursed by God?***

    What Is the Bible's View?

    Are Blacks Cursed by God?

    […]Even up to a hundred years ago the Catholic Church held the view that blacks were cursed by God. Maxwell explains that this view"apparently survived until 1873 when Pope Pius IX attached an indulgence to a prayer for the 'wretched Ethiopians in Central Africa that almighty God may at length remove the curse of Cham [Ham] from their hearts.'"

    So the Catholic Church had the view blacks were accursed up until 1873. What about the Watchtower?

    *** Zion's Watch Tower, August 1, 1898, p. 230 ***
    The negro race is supposed to be descended from Ham, whose special degradation is mentioned in Gen. 9:22, 25.
    *** The Watchtower of April 15, 1900 p. 122 ***
    There are probably as many as a hundred colored brethren on the Watch Tower lists, some of them very clear in the truth, and very earnest in its service, financially and otherwise. We have received letters from several of these, who had intended engaging in the volunteer work, expressing surprise that in the call for volunteers in the March 1st issue we restricted the inquiry to white Protestant churches. They rightly realized that we have not the slightest of race prejudice , and that we love the colored brethren with just the same warmth of heart that we love the white, and they queried therefore why such a distinction should be made in the call. The reason is that so far as we are able to judge, colored people have less education than whites — many of them quite insufficient to permit them to profit by such reading as we have to give forth. Our conclusion therefore is based upon the supposition that reading matter distributed to a colored congregation would more than half of it be utterly wasted, and a very small percentage indeed likely to yield good results.

    What about  changing skin colour?

    *** Zion's Watch Tower 1900 October 1 p. 296-297 ***


    The following, from the New York World, is the third we have seen reported. These suggest and illustrate the process of restitution soon due. The item reads:

    "From Black to White He Slowly Turned"

    Parkersburg, W. Va., Sept. 8. It has fallen to the lot of the Rev. William H. Draper, pastor of the Logan Memorial church, of Washington Conference, A.M.E. church, of this town, to give a living affirmative answer to the famous Biblical question, "Can the Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard his spots?" Though once as black as charcoal, the Rev. Mr. Draper is now white. His people say that his color was changed in answer to prayer. Many years ago Draper was employed by a fair-skinned man, and he was often heard to remark that if he could only be white like his employer, he would be happy. While in the white man's service Draper `experienced' religion.

    From that day forward he prayed constantly and fervently that he might become white. Thirty years ago his prayer began to be answered. He first experienced a prickling sensation on his face, and upon close investigation found a number of small white spots scarcely larger than the point of a pin. He became alarmed, thinking he had some peculiar disease but he did not suffer and aside from the prickling sensation felt nothing unusual. Gradually the white spots became larger and extended themselves, until now, after the change has been in progress for over thirty years, Draper has not a single dark spot on his body.

    *** Zion's Watch Tower 1902 July 15 p.215-216 ***
    *** The Watchtower Reprints 1902 July 15 p.3043 ***

    The Negro Not A Beast

    While it is true that the white race exhibits some qualities of superiority over any other, we are to remember that there are wide differences in the same Caucasian (Semitic and Aryan) family; and also we should remember that some of the qualities which have given this branch of the human family its preeminence in the world are not such as can be pointed to as in all respects admirable....The secret of thegreater intelligence and aptitude of the Caucasianundoubtedly in great measure is to be attributed to the commingling of blood amongst its various branches; and this was evidently forced in large measure by circumstances under divine control.
    *** The Golden Age, July 24, 1929, p. 702
    Question: Is there anything in the Bible that reveals the origin of the Negro? Answer: It is generally believed that the curse which Noah pronounced upon Canaan was the origin of the Black race . Certain it is that when Noah said, 'Cursed be Canaan, a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren,' he pictured the future of the Colored race. They have been and are a race of servants , but now in the dawn of the twentieth century, we are all coming to see this matter of service in its true light and to find that the only real joy in life is in serving others; not bossing them. There is no servant in the world as good as a good Colored servant, and the joy that he gets from rendering faithful service is one of the purest joys there is in the world.

    There is no servant in the world as good as a good Colored servant

    No patronising there then

    *** The Watchtower, Feb. 1, 1952, p. 95 Questions from Readers ***
    Questions from Readers

    If the Watchtower Society is free from racial prejudice, why does it tolerate segregation at its assemblies in certain sections of country? Is this not a course of compromise?—F. C., Wisconsin.

    Why do we tolerate the segregation laws and policies of certain governments and organizations of this world? Because Jehovah has not commissioned us to convert the world, which is wicked beyond recovery and hence will be destroyed. Jehovah has commissioned us to preach the gospel. Now what should we do? Drop preaching to fight racial issues? We never have separate meetings and baptisms when we can have them together. But when impossible, shall we have separate meetings and baptisms, or none at all? Shall we serve spiritual food to all, even if separately, or serve it to none? Shall we provide baptism for all, even if separately, or provide it for none? Should we buck Caesar's segregation laws, when they do not force us to violate God's laws? God does not forbid separate assembly and baptism, and he commands assembly and baptism. (Matt. 28:19; Heb. 10:25) So should we disobey God to fight a racial issue? To buck the segregation laws would bring on disruption of the witness work, halting of it, mob violence, and possible loss of life. Only laws prohibiting gospel-preaching will we buck at that price.

    Some may argue segregation is prohibited by God, citing Galatians 3:28 (NW): "There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor freeman, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in union with Christ Jesus." That Paul spoke in a spiritual sense and not in a literal, physical sense is obvious, since actually there were male and female, slave and free, Jew and Greek. Because of the existence of Jew and Greek he specially accommodated himself and his preaching to such classes. (1 Cor. 9:19-22) His recognition of slave and freeman we will consider in more detail, since it bears directly on segregation. How so? Because segregation is rooted in slavery, is the outgrowth and hangover of slavery. Segregation, the stain left by slavery, is a lesser evil than slavery. So if the Bible does not instruct Christians to fight slavery it would not sanction them to battle the lesser evil of segregation, at the expense of gospel-preaching.

    Even within the Christian congregation Paul did not protest the slavery of his time. Onesimus was Philemon's slave, and both were Christians. (Philem. 10-16) Paul wrote Timothy, who pictured the society of witnesses today: "Let as many as are slaves under a yoke keep on considering their owners worthy of full honor." Why? "That the name of God and the teaching may never be spoken of injuriously." Kingdom preaching and Jehovah's vindication are the issues to keep foremost, not creature equality and racial issues. "Moreover, let those having believing owners not look down on them, because they are brothers. On the contrary, let them the more readily be slaves, because those receiving the benefit of their good service are believers and beloved." (1 Tim. 6:1, 2, NW) Here again note that the slavery of those times existed even within the Christian congregation.

    Paul also wrote: "In whatever state each one was called, let him remain in it. Were you called a slave? Do not let it worry you; but if you can also become free, rather seize the opportunity." If Paul could say this regarding slavery, how much more so can it be said to those discriminated against by segregation laws: "Do not let it worry you." It is no cause for Christian concern or anxiety. But if the Lord's people are in locations where they are free of segregation laws or policies, they rejoice in the greater freedom and delight to be together in assembly. All are slaves of Christ, as Paul goes on to show: "Anyone in the Lord that was called a slave is the Lord's freedman: likewise he that was called a free man is a slave of Christ." (1 Cor. 7:20-24, NW) Surprisingly, some colored brothers have strenuously objected to this, protesting as offensive the use of the word "slave" in the New World Translation. Any who do not wish to be Christ's slave, whether white or black, can cease such service at any time; but they will be slaves nonetheless, only slaves of Satan and sin. (Rom. 6:16-23, NW) Those who magnify human importance soon hide from their view the really vital issues.

    Jehovah is no respecter of persons. Neither are his people. But the world in which we live is. Whites are prejudiced against colored, colored are prejudiced against whites. In some colored communities after nightfall a white person would enter at the risk of his very life. To justify this on the grounds that the whites started the discrimination is not Scriptural. (Rom. 12:17) Now, where the danger is extreme should white persons enter these hostile communities and suffer beating and possibly death to prove they have a democratic right to be there? Should a white witness endanger his life to attend a meeting of colored witnesses in such places, or stay overnight with his colored brothers there, just to prove his democratic right to do so?

    Many colored persons practice color-prejudice against their own people. Lighter-colored Negroes will shun the darker ones

    . Some from the Western Hemisphere look down upon the very dark ones from Africa. In South Africa, whites discriminate against the mixed coloreds, the mixed coloreds against the native blacks, the native blacks against the Indian coolies, and in their native India the Indians discriminate against the no caste or outcasts. Who is innocent to throw the first stone? Can we not see that all classes of the human race are evil, that if we start reforming we shall be lost in an impossible task, with endless discriminations and many varieties or injustices to beat down, which crusading social and political organizations of this world have hopelessly fought for years? For us to become like them would be to fail with them, consume our time in such reforms, lose out as Jehovah's witnesses, and please only the Devil.

    So let us please God by preaching the gospel despite the undesirable conditions the Devil's world may make for us. Let us not be sidetracked by Satan and caught in a subtle snare camouflaged in lofty motives and ideals. Can we not wait upon Jehovah to avenge the wrongs we suffer now? Really, our colored brothers have great cause for rejoicing. Their race is meek and teachable, and from it comes a high percentage of the theocratic increase. What if the worldly wise and powerful and noble look down on them as foolish and weak and ignoble, not on an equality with self-exalted whites? It is to God's ultimate honor, for he confounds the wise of this world by choosing those the world considers foolish and weak and ignoble. Let us boast in Jehovah and in our equality in his sight, rather than wanting to boast in equality in the world's sight. (1 Cor. 1:26-31, NW) In due time the exalted ones will be humbled, and the humble ones will be exalted. (Matt. 23:12) All of us await this vindication from God, which will come in his due time. Until then, as Paul advised concerning slavery we advise concerning its lingering trace, segregation: "Do not let it worry you." (1 Cor. 7:21, NW) When possible we will meet together, when not possible we will meet separately; but in either event we are always united in spirit, brothers equal in our own sight, in Christ's sight, and in God's sight.

    The sign of racist is they try to blame others:

    Many colored persons practice color-prejudice against their own people. Lighter-colored Negroes will shun the darker ones.

    I am sorry but to defend Racism by quoting other racist acts is atrocious.

    My husband and I also remember a Watchtower or Awake from the 1970's, I can't remember the article, but it discouraged marriage between "different races" as life was enough struggle as a JW and it would make staying loyal to JAh that much harder.. Does anyone remember this article??


    I think this is the article you are looking for

    *** w73 12/1 p. 736 Questions from Readers ***Questions from Readers

    • What is the view of Jehovah’s witnesses toward interracial marriage?—France.Jehovah’s witnesses at all times seek to reflect the Biblical view of matters. The Bible does not specifically discuss interracial marriage. It does, however, show how Jehovah God views humankind and it provides guiding principles for those considering marriage.

    Superiority of race is nowhere taught or implied in the Bible. Jehovah God accepts as his approved servants people out of all races, without discrimination. The Bible tells us "[God] made out of one man every nation of men, to dwell upon the entire surface of the earth, and he decreed the appointed times and the set limits of the dwelling of men, for them to seek God, if they might grope for him and really find him." (Acts 17:26, 27) "God is not partial, but in every nation the man that fears him and works righteousness is acceptable to him."—Acts 10:34, 35.

    So, the Bible nowhere implies that racial differences in themselves have anything to do with the properness of marriage. Of the remarriage of widows, the apostle Paul wrote: "A wife is bound during all the time her husband is alive. But if her husband should fall asleep in death, she is free to be married towhomshewants,onlyintheLord." (1 Cor. 7:39) Thus the Christian is free to marry anyone who is Scripturally and legally free to do so, as long as that one is truly a fellow believer.

    Are there any other factors, then, worth considering? Yes, for Christians seek to exercise good judgment and wisdom in all they do. Among other things, they are encouraged to "go on walking in wisdom toward those on the outside," those outside the Christian congregation.—Col. 4:5.

    In many areas interracial marriages are becoming increasingly common. People are traveling more, and often find the ways and customs of people of other lands attractive. War, too, has played a part, and many European and North American soldiers have married Asiatic wives. There is, then, a somewhat broadened viewpoint on the part of many toward interracial marriage.

    Nevertheless, not all persons share this broadened viewpoint, nor do all appreciate Bible standards. Many deep-seated prejudices remain in the world of mankind. A Christian, being realistic, must face life as it is—not as he wishes it might be.

    In a few places, there are even laws making interracial marriages illegal. When that is the case, Christians are under Scriptural obligation to obey them, as such laws do not make it impossible for them to worship God with "spirit and truth." (John 4:24; Rom. 13:1) Of course, if a Christian would prefer to move to a locality where such laws are not enforced, he is certainly free to do so.

    In other communities, local prejudices produce discrimination and unkind treatment toward those of certain races of mankind
    . These prejudices do not make interracial marriage wrong. For the discerning Christian, nonetheless, they may give cause for thought as to the advisability of such marriage . No matter what the racial backgrounds of the mates, marriage of itself requires much adjustment on the part of both persons to be successful and to bring happiness. Human imperfection causes all marriages to bring some measure of ‘tribulation in the flesh,’ as the apostle Paul wisely points out. (1 Cor. 7:28) In certain localities, where racial prejudices are strong, this could put added strain on the marital relationship and could be especially trying for any children resulting . So the Christian should give thoughtful consideration to the probable consequences before entertaining the prospect of interracial marriage.

    Persons of different races may have very similar backgrounds, culturally, socially and as to education. Or their backgrounds may be very different. Sometimes the varied habits, attitudes and customs that go with different backgrounds seem to add interest to the marriage union. Yet widely differing backgrounds, even among marriage mates of the same race, can and sometimes do give rise to problems , making marital adjustment more difficult. In making his decision, the Christian should also rightly weigh these factors—for the other person’s happiness as well as his own.

    The Christian is under obligation to proclaim the good news of the Kingdom to others. (Matt. 24:14; 28:19, 20) As a factor, then, he may consider whether or not interracial marriage is likely to create a seriously adverse effect on the attitude of the people in his community toward this Kingdom-announcement work . The examples of Christ Jesus and his apostles show that they were willing to forgo things to which they had a right rather than severely hinder persons from being receptive to the truth of God’s Word.—Rom. 15:3; 1 Cor. 10:32, 33.

    However, after weighing all these factors thoughtfully, each Christian must make his own decision—in good conscience and motivated by love for God and for his neighbor.

    This is the point for me:

    As a factor, then, he may consider whether or not interracial marriage is likely to create a seriously adverse effect on the attitude of the people in his community toward this Kingdom-announcement work .

    So what about blood transfusions, celebrating holidays, saluting the flag, waking people up on a saturday morning....

    In summary, I felt the Watchtower was a unifying force as far as races were concerned. However I think the reason is that all JWs have a common enemy ( the world) and it is that common enemy that unites them.

  • garybuss

    I personally believe there is just one race, the human race. From my experience, Jehovah's Witnesses are the worst religious bigots on the planet. To me, Jehovah's Witnesses make hate a religion and they are nothing more than a club of bigots.

    For them to brag about any human equality is outrageous! Their only religious racial equality is that they seem to hate all races equally. That's not a selling point in my opinion.

  • done4good

    In fairness, the society did a pretty good job of teaching acceptance of different races and cultures. Better than most groups, honestly. This is one area where you can't blame the organization for individual's failings.


  • done4good

    OTOH, to Gary's comment, I would agree that no other organization teaches eliteism they way the society does. They ARE the most judgemental people in the world, when it comes to matters of "morality", and religious choice.


Share this