Republican Witnesses and Democrat Witnesses

by inkling 16 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • inkling

    It seems to me that witnesses are political in
    much the same way they are racist: i.e. often,
    but not out loud.

    I recall a conversation during a coffee break
    when we were talking about what sort of newsmedia
    we read/watched/listened to, and I mentioned that I
    listened to NPR alot, and found it to be the most objective
    and reasonable coverage available in our area.

    The elder I was talking to did a double take and
    then exclaimed, aghast, "Objective? Objective?!?"

    Awkward silence followed.

    It was at that point it really sunk in that JWs
    are totally deluding themselves when they claim
    to be "politically neutral". Bullsh*t.

    They tend to be politically underinformed due to
    apathy certainly, but extremely opinionated AND
    not uniformly.

    Witneess all hold political beliefs, they just
    don't ADMIT they are political beliefs, as if
    the only thing that counts as a political belief
    is a out-loud statement pro/con about a current

    So, did you know witness that were closet Democrats,
    Republicans, Libertarians, or Socialists?

    I think we all know a few JW fascists....


  • undercover
    They tend to be politically underinformed due to apathy certainly, but extremely opinionated AND not uniformly.

    Witneess all hold political beliefs, they just don't ADMIT they are political beliefs, as if the only thing that counts as a political belief is a out-loud statement pro/con about a current politician.

    I noticed they could be opinionated as well...but without hardly knowing anything about what was actually happening. They read the headlines or heard some talking heads from time to time and considered themselves "informed".

    Most of the time, if they spoke outloud about a politician, they would add a disclaimer so as to not appear too in favor or against. I've heard dubs who liked certain politicians say, "Too bad he doesn't have the truth..." or even "He'd make a good elder...". But if they didn't like the person they would defer to Jah's judgement, "At least we won't have to worry about this guy too much...Armageddon will take care of his administration..." (I heard that comment almost verbatim back when Reagan was prez).

  • Olin Moyles Ghost
    Olin Moyles Ghost

    This is not surprising. Everyone (even JWs) has an opinion about the news, politics, etc. I know several JWs who are as partisan as any "worldly" person. Of course, whenever they have political discussions, they insert the required disclaimers such as "of course, The Kingdom is the only real hope" and "I look forward to the time when we won't have to worry about this stuff," etc.

    I noticed an odd phenomenon over the last couple years during the Obama ascendancy. Lots of JWs (like the rest of the country) were impressed with his soaring oratory and progressive ideas, especially after 8 years of GW Bush. This created cognitive dissonance, and I heard multiple Witnesses talk about how great Obama's speech was...and how that was "scary." The idea was that Obama was so smooth and politically attractive that Satan had to be playing a big role in his success.

    Another odd reaction I've seen by some Witnesses is this. They speak in favor of a particular candidate for president--and explain that they hope this person wins because they expect that Armageddon will come during his/her administration.

    I see techniques such as those described above simply as ways to get around the JW "neutrality" issue and express a political opinion.

  • B_Deserter

    Most witnesses where I lived definitely fell on the left side of the spectrum. NPR was popular with everybody and in fact the PO would often use the phrase "I was listening to NPR the other day and..." in his talks. Also, I don't any JW I met that didn't hate Bush.

  • JimmyPage

    I know a Witness who is definitely a closet Republican. His wife is not a JW and obviously leans right. We all get along great, though, because we like the same sports team.

    I had this discussion before with my brother-in-law about politics and he thought that Witness beliefs lined up most easily with being a conservative. But it seems to me that most Witnesses actually lean left.

    I do recall a sister giving a talk where she mentioned to the householder a news item she had heard Bill O'Reilly talking about. This amused me because her conservative PO son looks like Bill O'Reilly and is very conservative himself.

  • Narkissos

    The gloomy faces of the French Branch Committee in the Bethel dining room the morning after Socialist Fran├žois Mitterrand won the presidential election in May 1981, with the support of the *gasp* Communist Party, told a lot about their neutrality... and were observed with much amusement by younger Bethelites who had grown up in the left-wing cultural environment of the 70s and felt more like partying. :)

  • gubberningbody

    Republican JW's are without exception, the lowest of the low.

  • Olin Moyles Ghost
    Olin Moyles Ghost

    In general, there are parts of the JW lifestyle/theology that fit well with the political left--the "new system" is basically a communist utopia. And there are parts that fit well with the political right--the "moral majority" type movements and social conservatism in general (anti-gay, anti-science, pro-censorship, etc.).

    In practice, I've found that Witness political leanings are fairly predictable. The well-to-do small business owner JWs are the ones who watch Fox, listen to Rush Limbaugh, and bash liberals and democrats.

    Almost all African-American JWs in my circle hated Bush and had a very difficult time staying neutral once Obama was nominated.

  • JWoods

    One thing you may have to take into consideration for JWs of my generation was the VietNam War. While people a generation past me remember the 1960s as hippie heaven, young witness guys like me were facing the draft.

    This war was - face it or not - brought into being by Kennedy & LBJ, and it was Nixon who eventually stopped it. Nixon also saved my butt with the draft lottery. NOBODY my age group trusted the Dem candidate Hubert Humphrey to do anything but slog on as before in VietNam...hence the HUGE anti-war demonstartions that his party conventions drew from the radicals and students.

    There is another factor, as well - I know quite a number of people who upon leaving the WTS in the post-1975 thing, and really truly being demonized over apostacy - reached out to the ACLU for help. They were laughed at and told to go play in the street; ACLU too busy hating on Reagan.

    Plus, for me at least, there was always the stigma of being kind of a pinko-commie by association with the anti-government, anti-war, and almost collectivized Witnesses. I was ready to move on with college, good job, decent life - the stuff associated with conservative politics.

    What frosts me about present day Republican Party, though - is the way they seem to be owned by the evangelicals. This also gives you flashbacks to the witness priesthood.

  • Narkissos

    My generation (born in the late 50s, in a different although similar - French - economico-political context) grew mostly with left-wing values which were the opposite of the previous one (our parents). They were children during WWII and started working in the immediate afterwar, with a lot of professional ambition in a reconstructing country full of career opportunities. We were born in economical prosperity and grew mostly after the last colonial wars (Indochina = Viet-Nam, Algeria). In the early 70s (when we became JWs) they were mostly attracted to the "right-wing" side of the teaching ("moral and family values"); we were attracted to the "left-wing" side -- which we construed as anti-nationalism, anti-militarism, anti-racism, anti-materialism. The official "neutrality" covered a very complex set of contradictions.

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