BBC News "The ex-Jehovah's Witnesses shunned by their families"
I read the article and lamented they weren't more accurate on the reasons for disfellowshipping. However....great to put this whole shunning thing out there for non-jw's to see so that when JW's come around claiming how wonderful their community is - people can push back and say...hey, don't you shun members (even your own family) if they leave????
The general public are probably not aware that JW's do this and it's not like JW's knocking on doors are informing the public- so even if the article is flawed, I think it's a great! As another poster said..who cares about the JW's who dismiss the article- I don't feel like it's for them and we all know when a JW is presented with negative info about the org they go into cognitive dissonance.
Yes, if your talking with someone who has real doubts or concerns we should try to make sure we are accurate.
However I agree with Smiddy:
Maybe all jehovahs witnesses will dismiss this article ,most of them are a lost cause anyway.............
However the general public will more likely , because of this article dismiss the JW`s as a cult to be avoided .
The problem is that your average JW doesn't even know everything they can actually be DFed for....including 'brazen conduct' which is a catch-all that Elders can use. Anything can happen with that religion.
Lets remember GB member Geoffrey Jackson's face palm slapping testimony at the ARC. "He said what! No he didn't! An apostate made that up!"
The point for me is the same as the information I get about Scientology.......... they have their own language and culture but the over riding message is that it's a miserable toxic 'religion' that also deals harshly with their version of apostates.
It's not surprising that a non-JW gets the "facts" (and esp the JW idioms) confused. It's amazing the editor allowed any time to be spent on an article that no one will give a shit about it. NO ONE gives a shit about JWs and their big/little issues because JWs simply DO NOT MATTER in the big scheme of things. Unless you are a JW (or an EX-JW) this is an article you'll skip or skim. JWs just don't matter (except when they wake you up on Saturday morning).
I haven't seen the program ( I'll watch it later ) but these programmes do have a drip-drip effect on JWs ( if they watch them. ) I remember seeing the famous Panorama program and initially trying mentally to dismiss it somewhat on the basis of a few obvious errors in the presentation but I couldn't deny the basic thrust of the program.
The essential message ( that JWs shun those who leave ) is starting to get through to the general public - a couple of people have said to me that they had become aware of that fact after watching TV or reading an article in a newspaper or online.
And the importance the Society attaches to people attending the Memorial is shown in the "Lot's Wife" drama in the 2017 convention. It almost becomes a life or death matter for the woman to attend.
I really like that the reporting is balanced - all three interviewees give both honest and thoughtful accounts. They came across as very credible to me. well done
I thought it was pretty clear that the woman was dfed for leaving an abusive relationship, which happens. I also thought it was clear that the guy was dfed for more than missing a Memorial, but because he questioned the faith and his wife turned him in. I liked the article. I realize that JWs will minimize things, but they always do that.
Ugh. the problem is as Steve pointed out, the glaring inaccuracies here whether due to bad journalism, or simply dishonesty on the part of someone he interviewed for the sake of sentimentalization......take away from the larger point. Shunning exists, and is carried out for stupid reasons.
JW's reading this will just call it "apostate lies" and laugh it off, rather than reading a story that connects them to emotion, and maybe thinking about it.
It's always easy to use "corporate lingo" that won't be understood outside of an organization without realizing it - when you're familiar with one particular use of the word, you expect everybody is.
Even now, if someone says "the memorial" I think of the WTS yearly event first, not "oh, who died?" (yeah, I guess the answer is "imaginary Jesus").
So yes, I can see the claim of being disfellowshipped for missing a memorial is being dismissable by those who want to dismiss it but who wouldn't listen anyway. But for most people who are involved with the WTS they will understand the message and if they are aware of similar situations themselves and the control of the WTS and local congregation, it may make them think.
People who aren't in and who are never in that don't fully understand - so what?
The main thing is that it's on the front-page of one of THE premier news websites in the world.
Can't we be happy?
I'm sure both of the people who were interviewed, gave an accurate accounting of their story but as is so often the case, "outsiders" just don't get the subtleties of the religion the way we do and consequently, their report was a bit off.
I think there was enough information presented for the average JW to put two and two together and know what happened but they'll likely choose to chalk it all up to "Apostate lies".
Even though the story was a bit skewed, articles like this one are an embarrassment to JW's even if the average "worldly" person will ignore it or will forget about it 5 minutes later.
The main thing is that the public is little by little being made aware of the practice of shunning and the ban on the use of blood for medical purposes. In the past, former JW's were voiceless and had to fade by the thousands into the wild blue yonder.