News and Links for ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses: Child Sexual Abuse within Jehovah’s Witnesses on Australian TV

Video: Child Sexual Abuse within Jehovah’s Witnesses Australia

The link above takes you to a YouTube playlist that includes videos from Australia regarding their recent (and televised!) investigation into more than a 1000 cases of unreported sexual abuse of children.

Video: Jehovah’s Witness Meeting Changes 2016

For those who haven’t already heard, it sounds like sisters won’t be involved in meetings at all. They barely had anything to do before.

Video: Elders extort

A dispute between an average Jehovah’s Witness and an elder. It pretty much goes down like many of us would expect. It’s a tiny bit Jerry Springer.

Local father offended by Jehovah’s Witness letter, claims its writer is targeting obituaries

A local father who wishes to remain anonymous sent Action News Jax a copy of a letter sent to his family’s church.

The letter read in part: “Sorry about your loss. I read about it from the obituary.”

Jehovah’s Witness literature was attached to the letter.

Jehovah’s Witness grandparents ordered to keep faith to themselves

The couple lost their bid for unsupervised access to the girl because they insisted on taking her to worship at their faith’s Kingdom Hall despite the repeated objections of the child’s mother.

I wish the courts would do the same for my in-laws… Sorry. But also, wow.

‘Abused by my brother, then shunned by my Jehovah’s Witnesses family after I went to police’

Louise Palmer says parents sided with evil Richard Davenport over her, while church offered only prayers and urged her not to go to police

I think the flaws in policies like the two-person rule and telling Witnesses they can’t take accusations to the police without elder permission (elders aren’t cops, though some of them think they are…) should be really obvious by now.

How the Church of Scientology fought the Internet—and why it lost

The title pretty much says it all.

Japan closed 638 Congregations lost 6,000 Publishers in 10 years!!! WHY?

Many seem to think it’s the internet. I suspect it’s at least partially a cultural issue as other religions tend to dominate in Japan. What do you think?

62 apostates mark JWsurvey Day 2015 with a message of love for Jehovah’s Witnesses

Very cool. 🙂 Big shout out to everyone who participated!

Betrayed and exploited: Dismissed ‘special pioneer’ lashes out against downsizing

This website recently reported growing resentment among bethelites over the constant downsizing that’s taking place as the Governing Body hoards its dwindling resources in order to complete the Warwick project.

There’s also a story about the issues that prompted the lashing out.

Watchtower of Britain found liable for actions of child rapist Peter Stewart

Still think the Watchtower Society doesn’t have a pedophile problem?

The Tight Pants Rule: Wearing “disturbing” clothing gets you banned from preaching

Control issues. Yeah. They have them.

News and Links for Atheists: “6 Young Adults Refuse to Remain Silent In Viral Video” … about Gay Marriage

VIDEO: [MUST WATCH!] 6 Young Adults Refuse to Remain Silent In Viral Video

Prepare to be offended to the point where you question whether this video is satire or not. It seems to be genuine, however. I discovered the story on Addicting Info which took the story seriously. There are some other articles on the original site that seem like satire as well, such as this one, but they are marked as “humor.” (I don’t think they fully understand the concept of irony.) Note the followup article here if you have any doubts. If you find strong evidence it is bogus, please let me know in the comments. Thanks!

VIDEO: A Timid Insurance Salesman Tries Convince God To Stop The Apocalypse

In this short comedy film, a very ordinary insurance salesman named Ike receives a very unusual honor: He gets to talk to God. But when he hears what God has to say, Ike finds he has to do some very quick thinking.
Eli Shapiro wrote and directed Ike Interviews God, and it’s a fun bit of wickedness. Not surprisingly, God turns out to be kind of a jerk.

I’m reminded a tiny bit of a short by Penn and Teller years ago about the discovery of an E.T.

Why doesn’t everyone believe in God?: The skeptical brain may hold the answer
VIDEO: Watch this great documentary about people who think they are gods

“Those Who Are Jesus” is Steven Eastwood’s fascinating 2001 documentary about three people who have true delusions of grandeur based on “profoundly religious or revalatory experiences.”

A Way to Respond to 40 Awful Questions from a “Loving” Christian

Kevin DeYoung, writing for The Gospel Coalition website, is frustrated with fellow Christians who support marriage equality. (Because if they support two people of the same sex declaring their love for each another, where will the slippery slope of consensual love stop?!)
So he tosses out 40 questions with the unmentioned implication that there are no good answers.

AUDIO: Leaving the Church A Conversation with Megan Phelps-Roper

An interview with Megan Phelps-Roper and Sam Harris.

In this episode, Sam Harris speaks with Megan Phelps-Roper, granddaughter of Fred Phelps of the infamous Westboro Baptist Church.

VIDEO: Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly is annoyed that this Satanist is intelligent

Report: Tom Cruise Is Considering Leaving Scientology

I dunno about this one yet. More here.

Read Laura Prepon’s Insane Interview In Scientology’s Celebrity Magazine
Jesus Would Hate This Christian Blogger Just as Much as You Do

It’s Matt Walsh.

Restaurant That Refused Gay Wedding Closing After Outraged Customers Canceled

FOX Network to air ‘Lucifer’ – portraying Satan as a good guy

Thirty-One Episodes Of ‘Bill Nye The Science Guy’ Are Streaming On Netflix
VIDEO: Mystery Science Theater 3000’s Trace Beaulieu And Frank Conniff – Friendly Atheist Podcast EP 52

Don’t get too excited. They’re not atheists, really, but they did appear at an atheist convention.

News and Links for Atheists: “Announcing a new video series – The stories of young Scientologists not told in ‘Going Clear'”

Announcing a new video series — The stories of young Scientologists not told in ‘Going Clear’

Now, the two young men from those stories, Aaron Smith-Levin and Nick Lister, are teaming up to create a new YouTube channel that will feature the stories of other young Scientologists who grew up in the church and believe they have a unique view of it.

A Texas Christian couple fled the country after failing to raise a starved child from the dead

In Texas, two church members have fled to Mexico after an anonymous tip was called into the local police that church members had been trying to resurrect a child from the dead.
The child reportedly died a week earlier according to NBC News.

Bill Maher’s Bigoted Atheism: His Arrogant Shtick Is Just as Ugly as Religious Intolerance

You know what you call someone who makes sweeping generalizations on billions of people based on the extreme actions of a few? A bigot. Bill Maher, for example, is a bigot. And if you’re a fan of his smug, dismissive shtick, you’re a bigot too.

I’ll let you guys argue about this one amongst yourselves.

How Christians Think They Can Convert Atheists… According to WikiHow

You learn a lot about campaigns when you read their strategy memos. WikiHow contributors have put together a page on How to Persuade an Atheist to Become Christian, and it’s probably a little more revealing than they intended.


Australia to stop welfare cash of anti-vaccine parents

Learning the Hard Way: My Journey from #AntiVaxx to Science

10 Questions With Science Babe, the Blogger Who Took Down Food Babe

The article referenced in the link above, written by the Science Babe, appears here. If you’re a Food Babe fan, please read it. Sorry guys, but she doesn’t know what she’s talking about and her campaigns are actually hurting the quality of the foods she targets, not helping them.

FDA and Homeopathy

The skeptical community is abuzz with the announcement by the FDA’s announcement that they are reviewing the “regulatory framework” of homeopathic products and are open to public input. We have written about this at Science-Based Medicine, and as you can imagine, this is a serious topic of discussion among the editors.

Not unlike the Food Babe, homeopathy is full of shit.

More evidence that near death experiences are related to brain activity, not the supernatural

So even more research, then?

Atheists Rewrite The Ten Commandments — They’re Much Better Than The Originals

Like that’s hard. Seriously.

Author Suggests Jesus Never Existed After Finding No Mention Of Him In Historical Texts

News and Links for Ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses: “California court guts child abuse ruling against Jehovah’s Witnesses”

California court guts child abuse ruling against Jehovah’s Witnesses

Now, three years later, an appeals court has eroded her courtroom victory even further by ruling that the leadership of the Jehovah’s Witnesses had no duty to warn congregants that a confessed child molester was one of their own. As a result, judges eliminated the punitive damages in the case. Conti still stands to receive $2.8 million.

Some are calling it a victory, but I think that’s debatable. The court did acknowledge that the Society did what it was accused of doing; withholding information from the congregation. But you have to dig through the stories to find that one out. Most people will just see that she lost and move on.

Here’s a little more from the article.

In the Conti case, the panel upheld the lower court’s ruling that the Watchtower and elders in the North Fremont congregation failed to supervise Kendrick when he preached door to door in the community, a practice Jehovah’s Witnesses call field service…
“While the Congregation may not have been able to police Kendrick’s behavior after scheduled field service was over, it could have controlled his access to Conti during the field service,” the judges wrote Monday…
Watchtower officials told the court they allow child molesters to perform field service, but not alone or with a child. They could not, however, produce a written policy for the court…

Conti has 30 days to appeal the decision.

This Guy Secretly Videotaped His Jehovah’s Witness Apostasy Trial

This was better than some videos. The elders really do seem to be engaging with him in a conversation. I’m looking forward to part 2.

16 Shocking Allegations In Scientology Documentary ‘Going Clear’

That link will surely work for atheist readers, too.

Did Jehovah’s Witness shunning drive young Brit towards Islamic extremist radicalization?

UK newspapers are reporting that a young British man, who has been found guilty of plotting to behead a soldier, was radicalized into Islamic extremism after being kicked out of his home by his Jehovah’s Witness parents.

Jehovah’s Witnesses video slammed for threatening kids with death for not paying attention in church

The clip, meant to stress the importance of paying attention in church and meetings, has been criticized for insinuating that not fully focusing during such gatherings can result in dying, even connecting the concept to the story of Noah’s Ark. has not yet responded to the backlash.


Mormon conversion rate lags behind missionary increase

Jehovah’s Witnesses have their share of problems with making converts too. They just don’t talk about it.

Charity Tribunal rejects Jehovah’s Witnesses charities’ latest appeal attempt

Using Scripture as “Proof” that the Society’s “Truth” is the Real Deal

So the Society's "truth" is all about the Bible and scripture, huh?

So the Society’s “truth” is all about the Bible and scripture, huh?

Finally, I added this one as a reminder to Jehovah’s Witnesses who keep asserting that they follow the Society because its teachings are Bible based.

The reality is that even the Society says you can’t arrive at their “truth” by following scripture. Most denominations of Christianity use the Bible just as the Society does: by interpreting it to suit their own beliefs. Not simply following the scriptures “as is.” Having a Bible quote to back up every doctrine is not the key to finding the true religion, if such a thing exists.

To put things into context, look up “true religion” and add the name of any major religion in a Google search and you’ll find papers arguing that the religion you added is the one, true religion. And all of them will quote scripture. I once found one that argues Catholicism is the true religion while refuting the Society’s claims to be the same. All of them leave a bunch of scriptures out while focusing on the stuff they do well.

Using scriptures to back up your doctrines really isn’t a big deal and doesn’t prove much.