Government Can’t Pick & Choose Their Favorite Religions
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – The Satanic Temple in New York City is working on a new monument that is being built to erect at the Oklahoma Statehouse. The statue of Baphomet will sit at 7 feet tall and feature the goat-headed daemon flanked on either side by two children.
“The monument has been designed to reflect the views of Satanists in Oklahoma City and beyond. The statue will serve as a beacon calling for compassion and empathy among all living creatures. The statue will also have a functional purpose as a chair where people of all ages may sit on the lap of Satan for inspiration and contemplation,” spokesman Lucien Greaves explained.
The group had offered the monument in response to the fact that Christians were allowed to erect a monument to the Ten Commandments on the statehouse grounds. Constitutional scholars mostly agree that if faith-based works of art are to be allowed on government property, then all faiths must have the right to be represented.
Duane Mass, the man who designed the capitol rejected the idea saying “That’s Oklahoma’s house. It’s not the Satanic club of New York’s house.” Rep. Earl Sears of OK agreed saying, “This is a faith-based nation and a faith-based state.”
The ACLU originally filed to have the Ten Commandments removed on First Amendment grounds. Ryan Kiesel of the Oklahoma ACLU said that the government can’t play favorites. “I think that our position is there shouldn’t be any religious monuments at the state Capitol, that anytime the government has a monument representing one faith it creates an atmosphere that is not welcoming to people of all faiths or non-believers,” Kiesel said.
“If, at the end of the day,” he said, “the Ten Commandments monument is allowed to remain on the Capitol grounds with its overtly Christian message, then the Satanic Temple’s proposal can’t be rejected because it is of a different religious viewpoint.”
A spokesperson for the Satanic temple also said: “The whole point is that we’re a religiously pluralistic society, so if there’s going to be one, there will be others, or at least we’ll make the effort for such. Or there will be neither. Those are the only real options.”
The Satanic temple believes that erecting a statue to their daemon lord is within their constitutional rights.
“Our monument celebrates an unwavering respect for the Constitutional values of religious freedom and free expression,” Lucien Greaves said. “Satanism is a fundamental component at the genesis of American liberty. Medieval witch-hunts taught us to adopt presumption of innocence, secular law, and a more substantive burden of proof. Today, we are rightly offended by the notion of blasphemy laws and divine fiats. Acknowledging wrongful persecutions has helped shape the legal system that preserves the sovereignty of our skeptics, heretics, and the misunderstood. It has shaped a proud culture of tolerance and free inquiry. This is to be a historical marker commemorating the scapegoats, the marginalized, the demonized minority, and the unjustly outcast.”
The group is trying to raise $20,000 by the 17th of January in order to build the statue.