JW.org does partial U-turn over Awake! magazine Rama Singh misquote
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JW.org has removed their misquote of Rama Singh from digital versions of Awake! magazine

JW.org has removed their misquote of Rama Singh from digital versions of Awake! magazine

Some of you will remember that back in January we reported on the latest example of a Watchtower publication misquoting an academic to get its anti-science views across. Biologist Rama Singh was quoted in the January 2015 Awake! magazine with comments that seemed to suggest he was a denier of evolutionary theory, when in actual fact he is anything but.

“JW has indeed misquoted me and I do not agree with their article and its anti-evolution stand,” he said on being alerted to the matter.

In an open letter to Awake! magazine editors, Singh made this request (bold is mine):

“So I am asking you first to remove the misquotation from your article immediately and second print an unconditional apology for what I consider is a deliberate damaging action on your part to my reputation.”

Well… it seems Awake! has done the first part. Digital versions of the January 2015 Awake! magazine, including the PDF download, no longer feature the Rama Singh quote as the following images show…

BEFORE…

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AFTER…

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The only thing that is conspicuous by its absence is the second part of Singh’s request – namely a printed, unconditional apology from Awake! editors for misquoting him. Unfortunately for Singh, who has since written about the incident in the Hamilton Spectator, it is extremely doubtful he will receive any such thing.

Despite professing “Christlike humility,” the “spiritual men” who work on the Governing Body’s Writing Committee are not renowned for their willingness to issue apologies or print retractions.

Needless to say, the whole affair smacks of hypocrisy. A religion that is the first to point the finger at others for deception and subterfuge is not above stooping to such methods if it means duping people into embracing their backwards views.

The scandal also makes a mockery of this quote from page 13 of the 2011 Yearbook:

“In summary, the Writing Department insists on using only material that is accurate and truthful, even regarding seemingly insignificant details. As a result, ‘the faithful and discreet slave’ can consistently supply spiritual food that brings honor to ‘the God of truth,’ Jehovah.—Ps. 31:5.”

 

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79 Responses to JW.org does partial U-turn over Awake! magazine Rama Singh misquote

  1. Fulano says:

    Be p. 225: “In addition to checking the reliability of the sources, consider carefully how you plan to use the information. Make sure that your use of quotations and statistics harmonizes with the context from which they are taken. In an effort to express yourself forcefully, be careful that “some people” does not become “the majority of people,” that “many people” does not become “everyone,” and that “in some cases” does not become “always.” Overstating matters or exaggerating reports involving number, extent, or seriousness raises questions of credibility.”

    Focus on the last part: “raises questions of credibility.”

  2. AlF says:

    Excelsior, Obviously, sir, you need to learn the meaning of the word “euphemism.” Saying I want those people buried does not have to be taken literally. In defense of notanapologist, I assume he knew innocent people died on those planes. He was likely just using a historical event as an analogy to make his point. No need to go through his comments with a fine-tooth comb. As for your “free and fair trial” for the governing body, let me ask you this, did the victims of the watchtower’s molesters get a “fair trial” before they were taken advantage of? And how long will your proposed “re-education” program take, to wean the masses off their opiate of religion? A century, a millennium, or more? By then, our charming Middle Eastern friends will have beheaded, incinerated or thrown us all off tall buildings. Patience is a virtue, sir, but only to a point.

    • john says:

      alleged victims you mean. How dare you slander the gb in this way, they are the faithful and discreet slave.

      • anonymous says:

        @john, they are the “alleged” faithful and discreet slave until proved to be so.

      • Charles Costante says:

        Because they tell you they are, john?!!! They are no more the F&DS than the Pope is God’s representative on earth.

      • Excelsior! says:

        John,

        Why do you say alleged victims, sir? These cases have been through a trial and so these are CONFIRMED cases.

        It is the governing body who have slandered the victims and the ex JWs. Mr Lett accused all of these cases of being apostate driven lies! Mr Lett, a member of the governing body, is a slanderer, not any of us.

        What level of proof do you require, John? Is a thorough investigation by the “superior authorities” (Romans 13) not good enough for you? Is a free and fair trial not good enough for you, John?

        How can you call the governing body of JWs the “faithful and discreet slave”?

        Was it discreet of the governing body to fail to make plans that were within their means for the upcoming service year?

        What convinced you that the governing body of the JWs are the faithful and discreet slave, John?

        We are not the ones slandering people, John. We are trying to protect children and young people from the paedophiles who operate, seemingly with impunity, in your religion.

        I would say that this is a Christian act, wouldn’t you, John?

        Please do your own independent research, John.

        Peace be with you, Excelsior!

  3. Tim smith says:

    The audio version of the Awake has not changed. It still reads as the original was printed as of yesterday.

  4. Excelsior! says:

    AIF,

    Thank you for your reply. I have just checked the meaning of euphemism and it does not apply here.

    An euphemism is where a less controversial word is used to replace one that may be taboo etc.

    No, the victims did not have a free and fair trial. They weren’t on trial, were they? They were abused by disgusting individuals who need to be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. That is something that we both agree with, sir.

    As for how long this education programme will take – I have no idea. In my opinion, regardless of how long it takes, it is preferable to aggression and violence. We can, of course, disagree.

    I have stated that all religions must be held to account by thr same laws as all citizens. This is something we can all help with by engaging with our Representatives, and lobbying for this.

    We must agree to disagree, sir. I thank you sincerely for your polite response. I appreciate it.

    Peace be with you, Excelsior!

  5. Excelsior! says:

    AIF,

    I think the device used by your good self and notanapologist was hyperbole. This is using exaggeration to make a point.

    I did not pick up on this, so I apologise for that. I had no context to judge the comments as hyperbole, and there were no punctuation clues, like the use of exclamation marks.

    Anyway, point taken, sir. I am glad that we have been able to clarify our opinions in this polite manner.

    Peace be with you, Excelsior!

  6. Excelsior! says:

    AIF,

    I don’t agree. Thinking allows one to make decisions, like for example, what to write on a comments section of a blog.

    It allows one to consider how what is written will be taken by those reading it. Thinking allows one to consider the consequences of making comments calling for people to be shot without trial, using hyperbole, as perhaps not the most constructive manner of discourse.

    I shall continue to think deeply about things, and search for knowledge, as this is who I am. I shall continue to challenge and seek clarification on posts that do not make sense to me.

    It is, of course, entirely up to you what you will do.

    Whatever it is, I wish you well.

    Peace be with you, Excelsior!

  7. Flying Dragon says:

    Excelsior, I have read some of your comments predicting global apocalypse if religion is ever forcibly abolished. My question is, what will all the religious die-hards whom you fear, use to kill the rest of us? Stones, as in Biblical times? It is the secular governments who control the world’s armed Forces. The only viable military threat from organized religion would be the
    Swiss Guard at the Vatican. The people of the world are starting to awaken and move toward secularism and atheism, anyway. I don’t see a reason to be a Nervous Nellie about it. You sound a bit like the JDubs, predicting global catastrophe. We can learn something from current events. The Allies hesitated to back the rebels in Syria in their righteous cause of overthrowing a brutal dictatorship, and so ISIS was born from that cauldron. They hesitate once more, and ISIS grows stronger, acquiring more and more territory, wealth, weaponry, manpower, etc. Fear causes hesitation and hesitation will cause your worst fears to come true.

  8. laredac33 says:

    For the french speakers, this article is translated to french here:
    https://tjvisioncritique.wordpress.com/

    Sincerely

  9. kat says:

    If they are not plagiarizing they are misquoting, the FDS/GB has to be trusted regardless, because they are appointed by Christ. What a reputation!

  10. Excelsior! says:

    Flying Dragon,

    Oh dear! Who do you think make up the armies of the world? Are they all atheists, bent on the forcible removal of freedom of choice? Many of those heavily armed and well trained soldiers will be people of faith!

    Do you really think that religious people would not be able to get hold of weapons? Of course they could! How many Americans would gladly have their religious faith forcibly removed form them, without reaching for their guns?

    I am not ANYTHING like the Jehovah’s Witnesses. That was very insulting, actually.

    You state that the world is increasingly becoming secular anyway, so why are you and others getting so upset with me? Surely the passing of time, and better education, will lead to the gradual reduction in power of religion

    Why should you or anyone have the right to forcibly remove a major part of people’s lives? Most religious people follow the law and are of no threat to anyone.

    I agree that religious cults need to be challenged and compelled, not to drop their religious faith, but to follow the laws as all other citizens do.

    If you can show me in history where forcing people to do things against their will turned out peachy, then I would very much like to read about it.

    We shall have to agree to disagree.

    Peace be with you, Excelsior!

    Are all religious people so terribly evil, that you and others want to force them to disbelieve?

  11. Brazilian Guy says:

    I want to become a pioneer as soon as possible!

    • @Brazilian Guy . Most regular pioneers I went to pioneer School with in 1981 are Disfellowshipped or have broken marriages or had Mental Breakdowns (22 out of 30 of my Class ) So Brazilian guy I wish you well!!

  12. Bearwoody says:

    Yes, Alexander Thomson is truly another jewel in the Watchtower crown of Biblical Scholars. Verily, I say.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Thomson_%28writer%29

  13. John says:

    Good one Lloyd! Any questions now over why they are obsessed with jw.org? Instant history revisions!

  14. Excelsior! says:

    Folks,

    In the past, before the advent of the Internet, the WTBTS would have got away with this Big Brother revising of their literature.

    Now, the changes have been reported and are available for anyone to view.

    This is a great example of just how powerful this site is. Many other activists have also featured this in their work.

    I am pleased that “the good old days” when the WTBTS had pretty much complete control of information is over.

    No longer can they run roughshod over the correct way to quote someone with impunity.

    Peace be with you, Excelsior!

  15. Charles Costante says:

    ““In summary, the Writing Department insists on using only material that is accurate and truthful, even regarding seemingly insignificant details.”

    I have never been able to understand why so many people use the expression, “To tell you the honest truth ……….”(https://www.google.com/search?q=%22To+tell+you+the+honest+truth%22&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8) when the adjective ‘honest’ would appear to be redundant in that phrase. I’ve finally worked out why! It’s to differentiate from the ‘dishonest truth’, spouted by the Watchtower!!! (LOL)