Police inquiry over Jehovah's Witness magazine 'mentally diseased' article

by koolaid-man 14 Replies latest jw friends

  • koolaid-man


    Friday 30 September 2011

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        Police inquiry over Jehovah's Witness magazine 'mentally diseased' article

        An official magazine for Jehovah's Witnesses that described those who leave the church as "mentally diseased" is at the centre of a police inquiry, it has emerged.

        Police inquiry over Jehovah's Witness magazine 'mentally diseased' article The Watchtower is the official magazine of Jehovah's Witnesses Photo: ALAMY

        9:58AM BST 27 Sep 2011

        Detectives are investigating whether the article, published in July’s edition of The Watchtower, is in breach of Britain’s religious hatred laws.

        The article, published in the magazine which is distributed by Jehovah's Witnesses across the globe, reportedly warned followers to avoid "false teachers" which it condemned as being "mentally diseased".

        "Suppose that a doctor told you to avoid contact with someone who is infected with a contagious, deadly disease," part of the article stated.

        "You would know what the doctor means, and you would strictly heed his warning. Well, apostates are 'mentally diseased', and they seek to infect others with their disloyal teachings."

        A group of former Witnesses, based in Portsmouth, have made an official complaint to Hampshire Police about the article. Police have launched an investigation.


        They are considering whether to complain to the Charity Commission. The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of Britain, which prints church doctrine in Britain, is a registered charity.

        The church is known for handing down harsh punishments to followers who criticise doctrines or raise questions about the faith.

        Angus Robertson, a former Witness "elder" from an undisclosed town in Hampshire, who was present at the meeting with police, told The Independent: "The way scripture is being used to bully people must be challenged.

        “If a religion was preaching that blacks or gays were mentally diseased there would understandable outrage."

        But Rick Fenton, a church spokesman, defended the passages, saying ostracisation was "a personal matter for each individual to decide for himself".

        "Any one of Jehovah's Witnesses is free to express their feelings and to ask questions," he said. "If a person changes their mind about Bible-based teachings they once held dear, we recognise their right to leave."

        A Hampshire police spokesman was unavailable for comment.

      • Lady Viola
        Lady Viola

        Good work!!!

        I just received the article from the journalist who interviewed me yesterday!! It will be in de paper in the Netherlands today or tomorrow... Just a piece from the article:

        " The Dutch edition finds legally possible on thin ice . The magazine is translated from English and printed in Germany for such distribution in the Netherlands and Germany. This makes it legally a German product . Lawyer Gerard Spong said its possible church is punishable under German law . " This case law judges sometimes severe. Germans have more experience with the painful consequences of demonizing minorities . "

        Watch that space!!!

      • N.drew

        It's true, it has become a personal matter.

        But my experience has divulged to myself (me, myself and I),

        that even the best members of the organization (the friendly, spiritual ones),

        have sided with the cautious side, and judged for themselves who they will shun.

        Does that make sense?

        It means one word said about the Govening Body just maybe not being for your best interest,

        then no more cards. I am certainly on the hate list. Hey, what a coincidence!

      • cantleave

        The term "Inquiry" really pisses me off. A complaint has been lodged with the police. They have given it a crime number. It will stay on record, but no further action will be taken unless there is a case of abuse that can be directly attributed to the wording of the article.

        However another force, which had a complaint from another UK exJW, who does not post on this board, has sought advice of the Crown Prosecution Service. But again this is not an "investigation" of the Society, it simply clarification of the legal position.


      • punkofnice

        The blog on the Independent...........


        is very interesting and well worth still making comments on!

        If it weren't for work's protocols on this PC I would be commenting still.

      • cedars

        I have to admit I was surprised at the use of the words "investigation" and "inquiry" in the press reports.

        Mind you, they must have a legal basis for doing so, or they would be vulnerable to action through the press complaints commission.


      • I quit!
        I quit!
        Germans have more experience with the painful consequences of demonizing minorities . "

        Yes, and this language has to sound pretty familiar to the Germans. When I read the article what came to mind was those Nazi propaganda films where they describe Jews and diseased or vermin. If they ever did get the kingdom they desire to rule over it would wind up looking a lot like Nazi Germany in a pretty short period of time.

        I have no problem with governments looking into the Watchtower's hate speech. It doesn't bother them when the lowly JWs around the world take a beating for their stupid comments and actions but if it effects the boys at the top then that is a different matter. Threaten to take away their tax exempt status and they would change their tune.

        We can be thankful that they are only book publishing cult with a superiorty complex rather than anyone with any real power.

      • WTWizard

        I hope they use this kind of ongoing hate speech by the witlesses to retract their status as legal religions. Tax them to death, and then censor them like they do anyone else that uses hate speech (of this magnitude--this is more than an insult, but a threat).


        Call me strange if you like but having left the Watchtower Society's organization, I really don’t care what they think of me or what they call me. Left means completely gone.

        Apostate, mentally diseased, disloyal, lazy, demonized, redneck son of a bitch that has returned to his own vomit; still sounds a hell of a lot better than being a brain-dead, mislead, hypocritical, grovelling, bible bashing, Watchtower slave with his head up his own kingdom hall rostrum.

      • wha happened?
        wha happened?

        Right on Gladiator, I feel the same. If they think I'm "beyond any sense of morality", then I'll take that to go. However, hate speech is hate speech and I regard it just as seriously if someone made a hateful violent blanket statement against my ethnicity.

        Sorry WT but there are laws and no it's not persecution when you hate on others and they respond in a "legal" manner.

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