Sometimes extremist right-wing “Christians” make some rather hilarious blunders — like when the conservative-dominated Supreme Court ruled, in support of Greece, New York’s discriminatory prayer policies, that sectarian prayer at government functions is perfectly fine. Unfortunately, that opened the door to Satanists expressing their deeply-held religious beliefs, too.
Florida Christians are finding themselves in a bit of a pickle after a failed battle with atheist groups. It turns out that their fight to allow Bibles and Christian-oriented materials in Orange County School District also allowed materials related to atheism and their pal Satan to be distributed.
David Williamson, who recently fought Brevard County’s attempt to ban atheists from offering invocations at public meetings, sued Orange County School District over its unwillingness to allow atheist literature alongside the Bibles and other Christian materials. The case was dismissed after the school board ultimately caved and allowed the atheist literature, which included titles like “Jesus is Dead” and “Why I Am Not a Muslim.”
The Satanic Temple leaped on the opportunity presented by the case’s dismissal, and decided to flood the schools with its own literature, including a pamphlet entitled The Satanic Children’s Big Book of Activities.
“These bullies are mad and afraid of things they don’t understand,” the instructions on a word-jumble puzzle reads. “Help Damian use inclusive language to defuse the situation.” Frankly, the book looks kind of fun:
Lucien Greaves, the spokesman for the Satanic Temple, explained that the group “would never seek to establish a precedent of disseminating our religious materials in public schools because we believe our constitutional values are better served by respecting a strong separation of Church and State.”
However, if the school board will allow children to be indoctrinated into the Christian religion, “we think the responsible thing to do is to ensure that these students are given access to a variety of differing religious opinions, as opposed to standing idly by while one religious voice dominates the discourse and delivers propaganda to youth.”
“I am quite certain that all of the children in these Florida schools are already aware of the Christian religion and it’s Bible, and this might be the first exposure these children have to the actual practice of Satanism,” Greaves said. “We think many students will be very curious to see what we offer.”