I've Got An Idea: Sue An Elder!

by minimus 25 Replies latest jw friends

  • minimus

    I honestly think that if individual elders thought they personally might get sued, they would back off from talking to you or trying to hunt you down. I know I always was nervous that I'd havv=e to hire a lawyer and pay $$$ out of my own pocket.

    What do you think? Might that not discourage elders from violating your rights or harrassing you??

  • Mickey mouse
    Mickey mouse

    Personally I couldn't do it. To me they are victims like the rest of us.

    If anyone works out how to sue the society come back to me.

  • jamiebowers

    Didn't Doc Bob write a letter threatening to sue? From what I've heard, it kept him from being df'd.

  • Old Goat
    Old Goat

    Dear Minimus,

    I do not know what your experiences have been, and I cannot address them. When one becomes a Witness one consents to certain practices and congregational procedures. After one leaves, that consent goes away.

    Suing another for harassment is difficult. It is not difficult to get a no-contact order. I’m sure the press would love to print an article saying that Minimus sought a no-contact order from the County District Court (or what ever it is in your area) to prevent elders of Jehovah’s Witnesses from harassing or in anyway contacting them.

    This will require you to document what they do. Keep a diary devoted exclusively to your interactions with Witness elders.

    I can see it now, “According to the order issued by Judge Mary Lue Loopie, Jehovah’s Witness elders are prevented from approaching within two hundred yards of the Minimus house. The Minimus family asserts that the Witness elders acted in concert to harass and intimidate them. The elders worked to break up the Minimus family and deprive them of previous associates. Witness elders have a middle-school mentality, Minimus told the judge.”

    I stopped elder visits by simply making them prove ever point they made. I was an elder for years and before that a congregation servant. I was a servant when most of them were in diapers. Heck, I was a servant before most of their parents were born. I know what they say, where their talking points come from, and what the Watchtower really says about the scriptures they commonly abuse. Hit the books.

    You know what they say. Compare it to the Watchtower’s own comments. Elders commonly misstate what the Watchtower says. Politely beat them with their misstatements. Ask them, “Where is that in the Bible?” Say, “Isn’t that verse really about …. ?” Require the issue date and page number for any point they make. “Can you point me to a Watchtower that explains that?”

    You have no idea how uncomfortable most elders become if they must actually do their job as they should. There’s no need to be belligerent, just insistent. Listen. Be a good listener. Just require Biblical proof. You may be surprised. There may actually be an elder who gives you real attention and works to answer your questions. Mostly, you’ll make them uncomfortable, give them a guilty conscience, and they will NOT come back.

    Elders are failures as shepherds. They’re untrained and undereducated. What passes as training for elders is all organizational; there is no in-depth Biblical study. Blame this on the Governing Body and their 130 year history of anti-intellectualism.

    They ask you if you think theirs is Jehovah’s organization? Your answer is: “I find the very question offensive. Where were you when I needed help? I take better care of my children than you do of the congregation. If we’re children of god and you’re shepherds, should this be so?” If they return to the question, restate your strong feelings: “You’re offensive. You have no right to question my relationship to Jehovah.” Or, you can just say, “based on my experience with you brothers and the other local elders, I’d have to say ‘no.’ Jehovah cannot possibly approve of what you do.”

  • JeffT

    As one of my accounting instructors said, the first rule of law is sue somebody with money. Most elders I've known did not meet that criteria.

    Old Goat's post raises an idea: if you could demonstrate harrassment (not hard in some places) and get a restraining order keeping them (all JW's not just elders) "x" yards from your house, you could create a JW free zone around your house.

  • Finally-Free

    I didn't threaten to sue them. I just sent them a registered letter telling them I would call the police if they harassed me again or tresspassed on my property. That was enough to keep them away, and that was the desired outcome for me. If such a case went to court I might win or I might lose, but it would be an utter waste of time for the JWs, who had absolutely nothing to gain by pressing the issue.


  • aSphereisnotaCircle

    The only people I knew of that escaped the dicipline of the elders were the ones who threatened personal lawsuits to each and every elder that tried to harass them.

    Threaten to sue them, and mean it, and they back right off.

  • flipper

    I threatened to sue with Doc Bob's letter over 2 years ago in an appeal JC meeting. They sent it and my appeal letter to Bethel for inspection. They informed me a month later that Bethel had overturned the disfellowshipping and I won my appeal . They said I was free to go. So I know that threats of lawsuits work in certain instances . Also- they had no concrete evidence of the " circumstancial fornication " they were charging me with. So it may have been a combination of the two things that got me off

  • creativhoney

    I got DFd. worked pretty well for me. haven't heard from a witness since. think there is a force field outside my house too :)

  • tjlibre

    I’m preparing my self. I won’t allow any of them to DF me without a fight; I’ll quit on my own terms.

    I’m thinking that if that time comes for me, that’ll threat to sue each one of them individually for slandering and defamation of character. I’ll tell them that’ll go to the public and publish stories about their mistreatment of the sheep, their hypocrisy and faults as individuals.

    I’m actually doing research about legally revoking my baptism as a JW….(that’ll make me a “worldly” person right? ;) I think is worth investigating this option because I was under 18 when I got baptized, and I can say that they never asked me the question regarding loyalty to the Organization, (the burden of proof will be on them).

    I think that'll make them go away....

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