The Satanic Temple of Detroit applies for Capitol Holiday display, advocates Religious Liberty despite attacks from The Catholic League
Shortly after The Satanic Temple of Detroit announced it’s plan to a holiday display at the Michigan State Capitol, Catholic League president Bill Donohue issues an inflammatory statement against the group, claiming expressions of diversity are an attack on Christianity.
DETROIT, MI – December 7, 2016 – On December 6, 2016 Catholic League president Bill Donohue issued a statement attacking The Satanic Temple of Detroit (TST) for the organization’s “Snaketivity” display to be erected at the Michigan State Capitol this holiday season. This is the third year “Snaketivity” will be on display on the Capitol lawn. The controversial Catholic leader, encouraged his supporters to contact the Temple to express their opinions of the group claiming that TST “hates Christianity and lies for a living”.
According to Jex Blackmore, head of The Satanic Temple’s Executive Council and Director of TST-Detroit, “The overriding message in our holiday display, and many of The Satanic Temple’s public activities, is one of plurality and religious liberty. We have no interest in proselytizing Satanism to the public. However, we refuse to allow one religious perspective do dominate the discourse. For that reason, When there is one religious display on public grounds, we’ll offer another, and we urge other minority voices to do the same.” With that in mind, this is the second year that Blackmore has helpfully published an easy how-to guide on TST-Detroit’s website, instructing other parties as to how they, too, can seek approval for a holiday display at the Capitol.
The “Snaketivity” scene features a large snake wrapped around a Leviathan’s cross offering an open book as a holiday gift. Instead of a traditional Christmas star, the display is topped with a glowing pentagram. The message is “The Greatest Gift is the Gift of Knowledge”. The Satanic Temple acknowledges that the holidays are a season of gift giving and an occasion when friends and family often spend time together. The group hopes their message encourages families to take this time to learn from each other and celebrate the gift of knowledge, independence, and enlightened inquiry, “Just as the Nativity represents a mythology of the birth of Christ, the Snake is symbolic of the birth human enlightenment and liberation,” says Blackmore, “The Catholic League’s statement substantiates the need for expressions of diversity in the public square. When symbols of plurality are viewed as an attack on the majority there is a grave distortion of the American liberties we claim to celebrate, and we must work hard to protect them.”
The Satanic Temple of Detroit has applied to have “Snaketivity” on display from December, 15-18th. An application for a nativity display has been requested from December 15-21st.