WT Society Creates the Atmosphere which Spawns Child Abuse in Congregations
Even today after all this trouble, they would think nothing of allowing their male or female child to be isolated with a "brother in good standing" especially a pioneer, ministerial servant, or elder. At the same time, they would never do this with a barely known outsider. Much of this is because they continue to deny any problem in their ranks and to hush up such talk anywhere that the problem actually does exist.
This is because they perpetuate the idea that all of their people that perform the regular recruiting and Kingdom Hall assignments are spiritual and good and trusted.
It would be a simple matter to say "NEVER EVER leave your children (minors under 18) with people outside of their family. They should never go into the ministry without an adult from their family. And Watchtower does not approve of any activity where they are potentially isolated with any adults." [And of course, trusting/not trusting family members is another discussion, but at least this is a first step toward eliminating hunting grounds for predators.]
But I don't see them ever doing that. Can you imagine actually forbidding teens under 18 to "pioneer" without their parents? I mean, an even simpler answer would be to forbid the minors from even doing any recruiting work but could you imagine such a decision?
Despite their changes in rules about such a problem, they still stick to a basic idea- Call Watchtower first and foremost. Elders assume this is because they will get guidance from men in the best way to aid their abused minors. But it also has become common knowledge, even to those same elders, that they call Watchtower so that lawyers can figure out what is legally necessary and what will most minimally trouble the congregation.
Even when a predator is found, he can deny charges. He can appear to be repentant. And despite changes, local elders still go on a "witch-hunt" often to blame the victim for participation in sexual acts.
FINKELSTEIN- Good point. The WT Society has not only a self supporting diagram but a self supporting social system which supports prospective child abusers. It's so muddied with performing the WT functions like service, commenting, etc. as you said- that JW's could never tell who is a child molester and who is not. I like your expression that " The WTS purposefully creates an illusion of religious wholesomeness " - good point. So it's easy for unscrupulous pedophiles to take advantage of that environment to attack children.
LV 101- Interesting that an elders wife warned you not to let your children stay at sleepovers at other JW's houses. So she KNEW things were going on in the congregation. It's so weird that some JW's may know what's going on within the congregation- but will never come right out and SAY there's child abuse happening. They just are too " protective " of the Jehovah's Witness name or title that they don't want negative news of child abuse spreading around
Now for pg. 2 reply . Have to work tonight but I'll reply to OTWO's response first. Please feel free to keep replies coming in on this thread when I'm out of town till tomorrow ,I appreciate it. Take care.
ON THE WAY OUT- Very good points you make. Isn't it supremely ironic that the JW's allow their children to be with " brothers " in " good standing " and don't even question it- yet they'd never do that probably with any " worldly " people they even know ? It's totally due to the mind control and thought indoctrination concerning how " worldly " people are viewed as compared with JW people as taught by the WT Society.
Yeah, I don't see the WT Society implementing any forbidding of JW minors working with older " brothers " in the congregation. WT Society allegedly has in place some policy forbidding children working alone with any known pedophile- yet I feel it would be even better to prevent kids from working alone in service with any adult not in their immediate family. But- WT will never do that. They care too much about profits- not enough about children's safety. And yes- the old " repentant act " that child molesters put on their face when sitting before a JC can get them " reproved " instead of " dfed " which can further endanger children's welfare. I agree- it's a messed up system through and through
I always thought the atmosphere of automatic trust given over willy-nilly to any Tom Dick or Nancy that called themselves a "Brother" to be absolutely naive, delusional and downright irresponsible. If I ever voiced my concerns over this I would be be told "you have to learn to trust the brothers."
On day at the meeting for field service some guy just turned up that noone knew from Adam and announced "he was there on holidays" and that he "had looked up the address of the KH on google." That was it, no more info about him was given or asked for. We were going in car groups to rural territory and he was treated like a visited dignitary by the group of sisters the whole morning. The guy went to the doors but didn't do one as he was "just a visitor" the other sisters fussed and cooed over him trusting him completely even though he could have been Jack the bloody ripper for all we knew. It was truly crazy.
This sort of thing happened with "interested persons" also. They would just turn up at a meeting and you were supposed to "love bomb" them from the getgo so as not to "stumble them" regardless of the fact that you didn't know a thing about them.
You are absolutely friggin right Flipper the whole set up would seem like a paradise smorgas board to a predator and the unscrupulous.
As a victim of child abuse by a PO when I was 7 years old I know exactly what you are talking about. One point I would like to bring out is as a child you are taught to show absolute respect for adults in the congregation. With out question no matter what they did to you and the fear a child had towards them you always had in the back of your mind you can not say anything because you had to respect them. I hope I said this right so all can understand. This is very hard for me to explain. This is to me one of the biggest problems there is. Thanks flipper for letting me voicing this. Still Totally ADD
Agree 100% with your OP, Flipper.
Also, what about the use of 'auntie' and 'uncle' that's given to adults outside the family - adults who could be strangers except for seeing them at the meetings?
Doesn't anyone in the congregation realise why Uncle Chester always wants to work with little Timmy in the field service?
Besides their tendency to judge a persons trustworthiness by their meeting comments and their dress and grooming (no beard, short hair= good) the other danger is the magical belief that Jehovah would never allow such a thing to happen in the Congregation.
Because of their tendency to be overly trusting with one another, JW's are also sitting ducks for any JW related business scam and for pick pockets at the assemblies where they leave their belongings lying around on seats.
I have a male relative who was hired by a "sister" to do chores when he was 14. When it was time to pay him, she told him to come into the bedroom where her purse was. She proceeded to teach him the facts of life and it sent him off the rails...changed his whole life in very bad way for a time. It sickened him that she could sit in the meetings with her husband and kids and answer and give talks while he felt so horrible about himself. He was too ashamed to tell anyone for fear of the shame it would bring his JW mother, after all JW boys are supposed to be like Joseph and run away when they are seduced. Instead, he ran away from home and lived on the streets and found odd jobs. He joined the army as soon as he was old enough and somehow managed to pull himself together. He never got to go to high school or college but he did get married and raise a nice family (non JW of corse) His wife despises JW's for what they did to her husband.
I knew an elder's wife who believed everything good about a young brother who had been accused of holding a knife to his wife's neck during an argument.
"He goes to all the meetings, he's regular in service, blah blah blah,"
The girl's parents paid for him to return to his own country. There had been nothing but fights and feuds with this guy. She had met him online and then he came here and they got married.
I said, "BUT HE THREATENED HER WITH A KNIFE." The elder's wife said, "So what? He's at all the meetings and he's regular in service."
And there you go. I had known this woman for several years and thought we had a close friendship. But when she responded in this way I could not believe my ears.
Little red flags...
I would like to genuinely know why the bible in all its hundreds of Laws and regulations does not mention once the crime of pedophiles. I've even heard Jws say when I pose this question that pedophiles didn't exist in Israel, Because they believe the modern children in cong aren't at danger, it's this point where mental denial takes place. Jah doesn't seem to issue any protective statutes
You make some interesting points flipper that make a lot of sense
.And as the ARC pointed out not only are the children of JW`s at risk ,by the Elders and the organization s failure to inform the appropiate authorities such as police and/or child protection services , they are also putting the community at large at risk endangering the welfare of non JW children who live in the congregations area.Especially when such a person is not sanctioned by the congregation because their are no two witnesses and he is free to go from D2D on his own
Their is no rule that says a witness has to be accompanied by another witness in their D2D work.
Often JW`s go from D2D on their own ,maybe this is another avenue that should be looked at.by the ARC.