Reveal News: How Jehovah’s Witness leaders are responding to child abuse scrutiny by Trey Bundy
Thx Brock Talon, it takes some time and effort to do the research, then type the response. Without doing the research, no one can say "I know"
I also have done the research, reading court documents from many cases, and watched the ARC videos that allow the WT reps to speak for themselves.
When Geoffrey Jackson claimed to be a "Guardian of Doctrine," and others like him claim to 'represent the God of the Bible,' then perform as this scripture describes, they can no longer say.... they have God's approval.
(Isaiah 59:3-4) 3 For YOUR own palms have become polluted with blood, and YOUR fingers with error. YOUR own lips have spoken falsehood. YOUR own tongue kept muttering sheer unrighteousness. 4 There is no one calling out in righteousness, and no one at all has gone to court in faithfulness. There has been a trusting in unreality, and a speaking of worthlessness. There has been a conceiving of trouble, and a bringing of what is hurtful to birth.
Thanks Barbara for posting these you tubes and reports. Just disgusting Splane's response. If he truly feels this WT child abuse issue will " just go away " - then he's REALLY deluded- or just plain stupid. Wishful thinking will get Governing Body members nowhere. As much financial trouble they are in already and continuing to remain arrogant in refusing police and authorities in " Caesar's " courts proper information- WT Society is ripe for a crash if the federal government gets a hold of them. They really do need to fall so they can be exposed for being the criminal organization that they are. Peace out, Mr. Flipper
@ Brock Talon I appreciate your reply. I am familiar with the ARC, I have listened to the live hearings and I have read both submissions (from Stewart Angus and WT rebuttal) I have also read many of the available transcripts involving court cases (eg. Conti) I have also read Trey Bundy's articles. But I am sure not all of them. I think it must be clear to Mr. Bundy by now that WT are not going to deviate from the "two witness rule". No matter how good a investigator Mr. Bundy is, there is no way he can be intimately familiar with all the abuse cases in order to be able to say objectively "That issue is simply the abusers are coddled and protected more often than not".
It is simply ludicrous, and a truly honest person will recognize that if this kind of action were true, then it would be self defeating in view of an organization's OWN children and in view of an organization's own declaration of moral superiority. If Mr. Bundy is such an exceptional investigator, then he ought to ask himself why? Why is an organization that claims to be morally superior to any other organization on earth "supposedly" protecting pedophiles? Maybe that is the angle he should take. Maybe THAT'S the "mystery" he should try and unravel.
P.S. I watched his PBS documentary about Candace Conti. Because I carefully read the 2'000 or so pages of court transcripts, I can see how his documentary was slanted to make it appear that Kendrick was a notorious child abuser whom the WT shielded so he could abuse Candace. That's the short of it. Has Mr. Bundi considered investigating the possibility that Candace concocted this whole story with the help of Bill Bowen in the hopes of gaining $$$ ? There are many, many odd inconsistencies with Candace's side of the story. And it would not be the first time that someone has jumped on the lawsuit band wagon....just because they can.
Has Mr. Bundi considered investigating the possibility that Candace concocted this whole story
I can't say if Mr Bundy did so, but a jury of peers did that very thing and awarded Candace $28MILLION.
Now........a $200,000 award or even a $2Million award is one thing...... but they were pissed off enough by how WT handled it that they awarded her TWENTY EIGHT MILLION DOLLARS.
They must not have bought into the idea that it was a "concocted story". I kinda think they were trying to get a message across to WT.
And it would not be the first time that someone has jumped on the lawsuit band wagon....just because they can.
One can only "jump on the bandwagon" if they have enough "evidence" to make it through a tedious trial before jurors. Frivolous lawsuits do not merit $28MILLION awards. Do you really think the entire jury was bullshitted by the attorney and a "concocted story"? Or.... is it SATAN?
nitty gritty - Watchtower made a settlement in the Candace Conti case recently. Why would they do that if they just so happened to be innocent in all of this? To build up a case such as hers taking on a powerful organisation like Watchtower, her lawyer MUST have had plenty of evidence to fight her case. Perhaps you should research any available information into the actual case itself. That way you will get a balanced look at the case from all angles.
Yes, and a jury also let OJ Simpson get away with murder. It just depends on how good your lawyer is. And of course a jury will respond to emotive suggestions and purposefully targeted mental images. I must say Rick Simons did a good job in this regard.
Also, a jury is not an investigative team. The jury is strictly limited to what it is presented with at the hearing. In any case, as you know, the jury's verdict on punitive damages was overruled when WT appealed. Evidently the jury was wrong in this regard.
This is a very good question you ask: "If Mr. Bundy is such an exceptional investigator, then he ought to ask himself why? Why is an organization that claims to be morally superior to any other organization on earth "supposedly" protecting pedophiles?"
Trey expressed this very question to me himself as a matter of fact. He expressed surprise to me that they were not willing to meet with him to explain their side of the story for the record. He asked me my opinion on why I thought they wouldn't want to hurry to explain their side of the story to the press.
To me though, a related question would be: "Why would an innocent organization stonewall a reporter who could help them clear up misconceptions?"
Both questions are answered by this: Extreme hubris, coupled with a reckless application of Bible theology.
First, I don't believe it is the Watch Towers GOAL to protect pedophiles. No clear thinking person would believe they get behind closed doors and say to each other: "OK, let's see if we can make up some rules that would make it VERY easy to abuse children so that we can attract as many child abuse cases per member as the Catholic Church." No. That doesn't happen.
But what does happen is their hubris gets the best of them in their application of their often warped Bible theology and then bad things happen to their members as a result.
This is about more than child abuse issue too. It can be applied to their attitudes about the extreme shunning (disfellowshipping) policy, their rules related to blood transfusions, their attitudes towards higher education, their not allowing members to get a voting card in Malawi, and so on. They take what they believe are Biblical principles and apply them in an extreme and often reckless way that result in their members committing suicide, needlessly dying in operations, staying poor and depressed and financially stressed the rest of their lives, getting persecuted and killed in Malawi, and so on. No, they don't SET OUT to cause these things, but their policies and attitudes RESULT in them. If challenged by anyone by any of these things, they will double down because they are the Faithful and Discreet Slave after all, backed by Jehovah Himself. They can't be wrong, and if "True Christians" must suffer for their faith, so be it.
Regarding the child abuse problem specifically, this recklessness and hubris consists of them thinking they actually know better than the authorities on how to handle "congregational matters" and "to keep free from reproach on Jehovah". They don't consider that the "two witness rule" is one of principle to make sure an innocent person is not convicted on one person's word, but that in modern times this can mean guilt being proven in more ways than literally "two witnesses to the same alleged event."
Because of this hubris and recklessness, they try to handle these things themselves internally (where there is often partiality shown because JWs have a very definite pecking order) rather than relying on outside authorities to neutrally investigate ALL ACCUSATIONS and just letting the chips fall where they may with people who do this for a living. They actually believe they know better about the psychology of repeat offense tendencies, how to know when someone is "truly repentant" and won't offend again and so on. They actually believe this approach protects Jehovah's Organization.
Again, hubris and recklessness.
Regarding the dishonesty part, this comes in when the Watch Tower claims there is "no official policy of silence" that is enforced for an alleged victim. This is what the Wikipedia page says on it:
The hearing was told that in response to a summons issued by the commission, the Watch Tower Society had produced 5000 documents including 1006 case files relating to allegations of child sexual abuse made against members of the Jehovah’s Witness church in Australia since 1950—each file for a different alleged perpetrator of child sexual abuse. Those documents showed that of the 1006 alleged perpetrators of child sexual abuse "not one was reported by the Church to secular authorities". The commission was told: "This suggests that it is the practice of the Jehovah’s Witness Church to retain information regarding child sexual abuse offenses but not to report allegations of child sexual abuse to the police or other relevant authorities."
An elder from the Australian branch office said that when not required by law to report abuse allegations to authorities, the church left the decision to report to authorities with the victim and his or her family.
(Side note: It's pretty sad when your church has an entire Wikipedia page devoted to "alleged" child abuse problems.)
Back to my point, can you believe that in 1,006 potential cases of child abuse, from files produced by the Watch Tower Society itself mind you, NOT ONE got reported to the authorities. Not one! Do you really think this is by accident or coincidence?
And this after the Watch Tower representative twists the truth by saying "the decision to report to the authorities is with the victim and his or her family". Really? You mean this was up to 1,006 families to report an alleged abuse to police and not one of them decided to do it, without any pressure whatsoever? Do you really believe this? This is the same claim the Watch Tower makes when they say "A family member can speak to a disfellowshipped one if they want to, it's their decision."
Sure, families can talk to disfellowshipped ones "if they want to", sure a family can report an alleged abuse to authorities "if they want to", sure someone can get a blood transfusion "if they want to", but they will pay the price for it in their congregations one way or the other, either by losing privileges, losing friends and family relationships or even being disfellowshipped for good.
This positioning of "you can do it if you want to" is a bald faced lie and every JW and ex-JW knows it.
Watchtower made a settlement in the Candace Conti case recently. Why would they do that if they just so happened to be innocent in all of this? To build up a case such as hers taking on a powerful organisation like Watchtower, her lawyer MUST have had plenty of evidence to fight her case. Perhaps you should research any available information into the actual case itself. That way you will get a balanced look at the case from all angles.
Conversely, why would Ms. Conti settle if she really had such a good case?
I have read all there is to read on the case. Including the 2'000 pages of court transcripts....
P.S. WT were going to appeal again
Brock, I disagree with you just a bit, about whether or not wt really wants to bring about hardship with their policies.
They claim that persecution is one of the signs that they are THE true chosen of God.
I think they do want to bring persecution on their members and make decisions that precipitate it.
Well said, and I think you're 100% correct.
A number of us also think there's an even deeper, darker possibility behind all the attempted misdirection and obfuscation...
...that if they were truly forthcoming, it would be revealed - in a manner that even the loyal rank-and-file couldn't deny - that there are virtually no congregations anywhere that do not have alleged sex offenders in them, including the higher echelons of the WT heirarchy.
The effect would be catastrophic.
The Campos case last year demonstrated that they're willing to lose in court by default rather than provide internal records of alleged abuse and/or high-ranking WT reps for testimony.