Information icon.svg Results for the 2023 RationalWiki Moderator Election have now been posted. Thank you for participating in this election, and congratulations to the winners!


From RationalWiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Jesus did not wear a WWJD bracelet.
Christ died for
our articles about

Icon christianity.svg
Devil's in the details
People are equally horrified at hearing the Christian religion doubted, and at seeing it practiced.
—Samuel Butler[1]
If someone asks 'What Would Jesus Do?', remind them that kicking over tables and chasing people with a whip are among the options.

WWJD is an acronym for Whom What would Jesus Do? It was used on bumper stickers in the 1990s by Christians, and has recently been reincarnated as a slogan on silicone bands, jewellery, and all sorts of trinkets.

Using WWJD[edit]

When confronting a difficult problem, it is useful to pause and think "What would Jesus do?" Some examples:

  • A bully pushes you down. You get up. You want to hit him, but you think, "WWJD" and pause… just long enough for him to bitch-slap you in the mouth.
  • You invade a large, fractious nation. No one seems to appreciate their "liberation". You get ready to nuke the whole place, but then you ask "WWJD?" (Or, What Would Colin Powell have done, but we already know that answer.) While you are thinking, resurgent Taliban and Al-Qaeda elements in that other country launch an offensive aimed at the already-decimated capital.
  • The Vietnam War and the surrounding controversy is raging. You have a choice between being drafted to kill, or volunteering to kill. WWJD? He would join the Air National Guard and avoid taking lives by refusing to show up for work, or run to Canada.

WWJD was originally coined by 19th century Christian socialist Charles Sheldon, who sympathized with poor people and worked on many projects for relieving poverty. For example, he inspired local people to help desperately poor former slaves who had settled nearby and established a kindergarten for African American children well ahead of his time.[2]

Today, though, no one ever seems to think Jesus would drop off a couple of club packs of cereal at the homeless shelter or sit down to a nice glass of wine and a shawarma with Maggie, though.


Protesting Trump's Muslim ban at John F. Kennedy International Airport in 2017

The phrase "WWJD" has been parodied in many contexts. Examples include the following:

  • A bumper sticker reading "Who would Jesus torture?" was seen in Seattle following the initial release of the Abu Ghraib torture photographs.
  • In Minnesota, you could find bumper stickers, obviously made by those evil liberals, that say "What Would WellstoneWikipedia Do?"
  • Cartoon fans have been known to ask "What would Scooby Do?"
  • "What would Dogbert do?" from the comic strip Dilbert.
  • "What would Leroy Jenkins do?" from "Laundry Files".
  • "WW(;,;)D?"
  • In the dystopian comic book series, Y: The Last Man,Wikipedia whose premise is that (almost) all men have suddenly died, one woman asks "WWJD?" and, when ridiculed for pandering to outmoded male ideas, explains that she meant "What Would JackieWikipedia Do?"
  • What would a pirate do?

See also[edit]

External links[edit]