JW's are afraid of leaving JW.ORG because it's the only life they know. JW.ORG teaches that non believers belong to "Satan's world". Therefore devout JW's keep association with non believers to a bare minimum. Being friendly with non believers is not the same as being friends.
Leaving means the loss of their entire support network, including parents, children, and relatives who might be Jehovah's Witnesses. It also means making brand new friends with normal people they can't relate to or identify with. People outside JW.ORG celebrate birthdays, holidays, they vote, and do all the things Jehovah's Witnesses can't do.
Trapped in a religion that doesn't respect the free will and human rights of members, JW's know they will pay a huge price if they leave.
JW.ORG says leaving them is 'wrong doing'. They quote 1 Corinthians 5:9-11 in which the Apostle Paul tells early Christians "not to associate with sexually immoral people ... or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters."
It's unclear how this Bible verse or any other forbids Jehovah's Witnesses from associating with former members. Certainly JW.ORG doesn't consider it immoral or a crime to leave the Catholic Church and become a JW.
In any event, those who leave JW.ORG without being "repentant", are judged, disfellowshipped, shunned, and even hated. This becomes a warning to JW's who dare question the absolute authority of Elders and the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses.
JW.ORG says, "Persons who make themselves “not of our sort” by deliberately rejecting the faith and beliefs of Jehovah’s Witnesses should appropriately be viewed and treated as are those who have been disfellowshipped for wrongdoing." Watchtower magazine, Sept 15, 1981, p 23, par 14-16
This article examines three basic human rights and compares them with the rights JW's have.
JW's cannot tell anyone that the Watchtower is not God's organization. They can't say other religions are just as truthful. They can't debate and question what the Watchtower says, including their right to have a blood transfusion in life or death situations.
Disagreeing with JW.ORG is not allowed. Speaking up and trying to make the organization better is impossible because the Watchtower claims to be God's 'faithful and discreet slave', 'God's organization', and God's 'channel of communication'.
Rebellion against the Watchtower is thought to be virtually the same as rebellion against God
In spite of lofty claims of religious superiority over all other faiths, the Watchtower disclaims having any divine inspiration. Since they have no divine inspiration, some or all of what they teach could be incorrect.
JW.ORG says JW's are 'free' to leave their religion and join another. No one will stop them. This is true. What they don't say is what it costs to leave. The cult uses emotional blackmail to pressure JW's into resuming their submissive role as slaves for the organization.( i.e. going door to door, pushing magazine carts around, attending meetings, volunteering, recruiting new members, etc. ... )
Therefore JW's are NOT FREE to leave! There is absolutely no way to leave on friendly terms. The price of leaving is very high. You can put a price on the loss your car, house, and personal belongings. You can't put a price on loss of your parents, children, grandchildren, siblings, ... perhaps your spouse will reject you, ... certainly all your close life long friends will have nothing to do with you any more.
The practice of judging and disfellowshipping (excommunicating) JW's means families and friendships are destroyed. All JW's are told it's 'God's command' to have absolutely no contact or communication with anyone who is disfellowshipped or 'disassociated'. Disobedience is a serious sin that leads to being disfellowshipped and shunned.
Thus many JW's obey and support JW.ORG - not because they want to, but because they're afraid of what will happen if they don't.
JW's are told that God's enemy is everyone outside their organization, - especially anyone who says anything negative about JW.ORG or simply leaves because they no longer believe what the Watchtower teaches. Enemies include parents, brothers, sisters, children, grandchildren, ... all friends and loved ones who leave JW.ORG.
Since 1925 the Watchtower has been teaching there are only two choices, God's organization, (JW.ORG) and Satan's organization, everyone else. They teach that they are the only true religion and all others are false.
Therefore if a JW leaves their religion and joins another one or simply leaves because they don't want to belong any more, they are discriminated against and shunned for the rest of their lives. That's why critics call JW.ORG a dangerous cult.
Some former JW's are hated more than others, especially if they draw negative attention to the cult by publicly revealing aspects of cult life that embarrasses JW's or educates people who might be researching information JW.ORG avoids talking about.
Truthful but negative outside information is censored. JW's are not allowed to consider anything that hasn't been approved or authorized by JW.ORG. They are repeatedly told that the beliefs of outsiders, worldly knowledge, and higher education is foolish, inferior, 'false', destructive, harmful, a waste of time, influenced by Satan, etc.
JW's are admonished to consume as much 'spiritual food' as possible from 'Jehovah's organization' so they remain 'spiritually strong'. They are kept busy doing JW.ORG activities and associating only with other JWs. Since 1879 and still today, there is a sense of urgency to work hard. JW's are constantly reminded that 'Armageddon' is 'right around the corner' and JW.ORG is Jehovah's only path to salvation.
JW.ORG has convinced JW's they are God's only channel of communication to the billions of people on this planet. Whatever they say comes from God and is 'the truth'. Therefore obeying the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses is the same as obeying 'Jehovah'. Thus JW's believe they are slaves of God, not men.
If you were to imply JW's follow men and not God, they would be offended. They would feel persecuted. Some might become angry and agitated. Others would calmly tell you this is an 'apostate' lie, far from the truth.
In all religions, teachers, ministers, and leaders are respected. Some take on the title of 'reverend' or 'father'. However in the JW faith, Elders and the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses must be obeyed. What do a call a man or woman who must obey another man without pay? Would the correct word be 'slave'?
Christians are not slaves because Jesus is their only authority. Matthew 28:18. Jehovah's Witnesses must obey the Governing Body and Elders.
Christians respect their ministers and honor them sometimes to excess but they are free to make their own decisions, say whatever they want, attend any church, have a blood transfusion if they need one, and control their own life. Christians are free to follow their conscience and put God first.
JW's are not free. They give up some very important and basic human rights. Some JW's do not fully comprehend what it means to join the Watchtower religion and be a JW.  In their baptism vows to God, JW's unwittingly agree to be Watchtower slaves without even realizing it. Read their baptism vows and see that this is true.
JW's must only attend the Kingdom Hall of JW's. They must not attend any other churches.
JW's cannot disagree with JW.ORG. Independent thinking is not allowed. They must be like-minded.
JW's must not listen to what critics of the Watchtower say. They must shun and avoid all contact with former JWs, including parents, children of legal age, siblings, and friends (with rare exceptions). See Watchtower Quotes
Learn the truth about Jehovah's Witnesses at this 'Imitate Jesus' convention of Jehovah's Witnesses.
The only way for an EX JW to get their family and friends back is to go through the 'reinstatement' process. They must convince Elders they are sincerely repentant and admit wrong-doing even when they did nothing wrong. According to JW.ORG, wrong doing includes challenging the authority of Elders and the Governing Body or simply leaving without stating a reason.
For most JW's today, their only crime is researching censored but truthful information about JW.ORG and deciding they don't want to be JW's any more.
Former JW's (or apostates) who disagree with the Watchtower are said to be mentally diseased.
Failure to follow Watchtower rules leads to disfellowshipping. Disfellowshipped JW's are shunned by family and friends forever. Millions haven't spoken with their families for decades.
Shunning is particularly harsh for JW's because they are not allowed to have any close friends outside their religion.
Continued: > False teachings, twisted things, and outright lies. How the Watchtower twists the words of Jesus to 'prove' things that are not true at all. Matthew 10:34 'I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.'
1. Can you imagine what it's like when one parent is a JW and the other is not? A child goes to the Kingdom Hall of JW's and learns that the parent who is not a JW is mentally diseased and an evil, wicked person controlled by Satan the Devil.
Some adults are perceptive enough to see that name calling and attacking former JW's who leave their religion is a mind control strategy that creates irrational fear and hinders JW's from finding out the truth about JW.ORG. But the brains of children are not fully developed at an early age. What they learn at Kingdom Halls can negatively affect their future.
It's young children who are harmed the most by mind control.
2. JW's dedicate their lives to God and their baptism identifies them as one of Jehovah's Witnesses.
Thus instead of following the Bible's instructions on baptism in Matthew 28:18-20, the Watchtower has made themselves 50/50 partners with God. To JW's Jehovah and the organization are equally important.
Even though honoring humans and human organizations to excess is forbidden in the JW faith, this rule does not apply to the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses. They have appointed themselves as God's channel of communication
By agreeing to be identified as one of JW's in their baptism vows, JW's unwittingly agree to do whatever JW.ORG tells them God requires. They are no longer free.
However the Watchtower does not know what God requires. We know this because the Watchtower does not claim to have any divine inspiration. Some or all of what they teach could be incorrect.
Therefore being baptized as a JW and believing the Watchtower organization is the only true religion and symbol for salvation like the ark in Noah's day, could be viewed by their God Jehovah as the sin of idolatry. 2 Kings 17:38; Exodus 23:13; Jeremiah 25:6;
3. Wikipedia says, 'Religious persecution is the systematic mistreatment of an individual or group of individuals as a response to their religious beliefs or affiliations or lack thereof'
4. 'A man who is convinced of the truth of his religion is indeed never tolerant. At the least, he is to feel pity for the adherent of another religion but usually it does not stop there. The faithful adherent of a religion will try first of all to convince those that believe in another religion and usually he goes on to hatred if he is not successful. However, hatred then leads to persecution when the might of the majority is behind it.' Albert Einstein
5. VIDEO and article: Are Jehovah's Witnesses A Cult?