Satanist Clubs and the First Amendment
Has the left finally found a religion it can defend wholeheartedly in Satanism? Because of the pro-Islamic actions of some schools, someone could have easily guessed it was Islam.
Coming soon to a school in the Skagit Valley of the state of Washington – a Satan club? Writing for www.goskagit.com (Sept. 22), Kera Wanielista pens, “A so-called ‘After School Satan Club’ proposed by the Satanic Temple of Seattle to be held at Centennial Elementary School should be allowed to proceed, an attorney hired to represent the Mount Vernon School District said.”
Understandably, many parents were very upset and disappointed with the decision.
Ironically, they are using a pro-Christian ruling, the Supreme Court decision of Good News Bible Club v. Milford Central School District (2001) to justify paving the way for the Satan club.
So this is what the First Amendment comes down to in the Year of Our Lord 2016? Satan clubs after school. This is an amazing turn of events and quite a sign of the times.
The school board president, Rob Coffey, said, “Very unfortunately, our hands are tied in this question. … We must make our facilities available – and in many cases we are eager to make them available – to Boys & Girls Clubs, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts. We must make them available whether we like the group or not.”
One of the big problems with contemporary America is multiculturalism, which embraces one and all without discernment.
At the time of America’s founding, as late as the American War for Independence – Ben Hart reports in Policy Review, Fall 1988 – 98.4 percent of Americans were Protestant Christians and 1.4 percent were Catholics. Thus, 99.8 percent were professing Christians.
What is that number today? About seven out of 10, despite the rise of many who now identify themselves when asked to identify their religion as “Nones.”
Satanism is certainly out of step with our American traditions.
One man who helped put Harvard Law School on the map was the Supreme Court Associate Justice Joseph Story, appointed by Madison. He wrote the first great commentary on the Constitution (1851). What he said about religion was instructive.
He wrote, “Probably at the time of the adoption of the Constitution, and of the amendment to it now under consideration [First Amendment], the general if not the universal sentiment in America was, that Christianity ought to receive encouragement from the State so far as was not incompatible with the private rights of conscience and the freedom of religious worship.”
He went on to say, “An attempt to level all religions, and to make it a matter of state policy to hold all in utter indifference, would have created universal disapprobation, if not universal indignation.” The context of the “all religions” would be Christianity in its various forms.
Story added, “The real object of the First Amendment was not to countenance, much less to advance, Mahometanism, or Judaism, or infidelity, by prostrating Christianity; but to exclude all rivalry among Christian sects, and to prevent any national ecclesiastical establishment which should give to a hierarchy the exclusive patronage of the national government.”
Why did the founders of America declare there should be “no establishment of religion,” but there should be freedom of religion? Because they didn’t want any one denomination to lord it over the others. For example, there would be no Church of England in America.
Even if the First Amendment supposedly allows the Satanist group, it’s still a tragic commentary on the sign of our times. So often these school systems out-ACLU the ACLU. They go beyond what the law requires in order to shield children from any form of Christianity.
For this column, constitutional attorney John Eidsmoe emailed me: “The key constitutional issue is whether Satanism is a religion, and I can’t predict how a court would rule on that question. A possible practical solution might be to require parental permission for any child to participate in any extracurricular activity or organization.”
Writing for WND, Art Moore says, “In her book ‘The Happy Satanist,’ the leader of a group pressing for an ‘After School Satan Club’ at a Washington state elementary school admits she and her colleagues don’t believe in any supernatural being and view Satanism as a ‘formidable weapon to fight for the separation of church and state. … At our core, we are an atheist activist group. That’s why we exist.’”
Even if this whole thing is a sick joke on their part, I still agree with C.S. Lewis, the great Oxford and later Cambridge professor, who was voted as the best Christian author of the 20th century. He said, “There is no neutral ground in the universe; every square inch, every split second, is claimed by God and counter-claimed by Satan.”
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