Jehovah's Witnesses and The Empire (Star Wars)
I've been reading some of the latest Star Wars novels that take place around the movies and I can't help but be struck with how the Empire reminds me of JWs. (I know it's typical of many high control groups, etc. but it's close to home. I'll give you two examples:
1: Today I'm working on Guardians of the Whills, a precursor to Rogue One, and this quote jumped out at me regarding the Rebellion drawing attention to the Empire's abuses of power:
"The Empire, of course, downplayed such things or dismissed them altogether. Propaganda by enemies of the Empire, it claimed. Lies spread by traitors and saboteurs who threatened the order and peace and security the Empire provided."
I could help but think of Stephen Lett's famous video where he called the child abuse situation "apostate lies".
2: Before that, I was reading the Servants of the Empire series. I have no quotes to share because the entire thing reminded me of JWs. It was about a family with a son and daughter. They gushed about the Empire and thought it was an honor to serve them. They're daughter went to train as a stormtrooper and they thought it was a privilege to offer their child to serve the Empire (kind of like missionaries, Bethelites). But then their daughter started to get disillusioned with the Empire. Communication was monitored and eventually not allowed. She wasn't heard from after that (like disfellowshipping). Then her brother decides to become a stormtrooper just to infiltrate the Empire to find his sister (like PIMO's and those who leak information).
Star Wars has so many parallels to being a JW or high control group. Like the Jedi Council being the GB or body of elders and Anakin wanting to be a member of either and doesn’t become one because he isn’t “spiritual” enough so he gets disfellowshipped and turns to the dark side.
Those parallels you mentioned sound really spot on
Yeah, if you've ever seen the season 5 finale arc of The Clone Wars, Anakin's Padawan, Ashoka, basically gets disfellowshipped by a Jedi judicial committee. When they later admit they were wrong, she says 'never again' and walks away for good. From that point on she's spiritual but not religious. Here lightsabers are white instead of colored.