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-Is WWJD Really Offensive?

by Dr. D ~ June 29th, 2009

image Is WWJD, which stands for ‘What Would Jesus Do’, really offensive? One couple thinks so and is suing! Wait tell you read why.

Mark and Sara Neill received letters in 2008 from Bullseye Collection Agency in order to recover a $88 debt. The letters included "WWJD" in the right-hand corner. The couple believes that the motto actually condemns debtors as sinners and therefore violates the federal Debt Collection Practices Act, which prohibits abusive or harassing tactics.

From their perspective—the collection was communicating a ‘shame on you debtors in the name of the Lord’—after all in the context of a debt collection WWJD implies that Jesus would pay the debt and so should you.

Interestingly, Bullseye is owned by Christians and is being represented by Liberty Counsel, a religious liberty firm.

Here’s my question—should folks use religion in this way? Is Bullseye justified in their use of the WWJD logo in their business and correspondence in trying to collect debts? What do you think?            *Top

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2 Responses to -Is WWJD Really Offensive?

  1. Wickle

    Well, I’m not entirely certain that Jesus would be in the debt-collections business in the first place, but we’ll move on from there.

    No. Religion should not be “used” in this manner at all. Between two Christians, we can certainly have the discussion about whether one’s actions are in accordance with Jesus’ teachings. To a non-believer, or a potential non-believer (I assume that Bullseye doesn’t know the religious beliefs of its targets), this does smack of condemnation. Not an outreach tool that I like.

    Does it constitute a legal violation? I don’t know. I could see it if the assertion was more assertive (“Jesus says, ‘Pay your bills!'” or something.), but not seeing the letter, I don’t know if this rises to that level. Still, as a Christian, I would argue that it’s inappropriate.

  2. Dr. D

    Thanks Wickle–good response. It really does bother me that it might ‘turn-off’ unbelievers since they have no way of really knowing who is or is not a Christian.

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