OLYMPIA, Wash. — SEATTLE (KOMO) – A congregation of satanists from Washington state were permitted to perform a ritual on the Capitol Building grounds next month.
A release from The Satanic Temple of Washington State said the group was given a permit to perform an invocation March 6 during the current legislative session from noon to 1 p.m. on the north steps of the Legislative Building.
Satanic Temple representative Tarkus Claypool said members of the satanic group and their allies contacted their state legislators in hopes of getting an invitation to give the opening invocation on any of the 40 legislative calendar sessions without success.
“Unfortunately, no legislator invited us to give the opening invocation in the chamber, so we give our invocation outside on the North Steps,” Claypool said. “We may not get a place inside, but we will be heard nonetheless.”
Meanwhile, Claypool said nearly all the invocations given at the State Capitol are Christian.
“Legislators hand-picking largely Judeo-Christian clergy is uncontroversial and politically safe, but it ensures that lesser-known religions—or even infamous ones such as ours— will struggle to have a voice in these chambers,” Claypool said. “The First Amendment provides full protection of our religious message, regardless of our beliefs, and Satanists can provide an uplifting and meaningful message to our state legislators just as well as any other.” Claypool said.
The Satanic Temple of Washington State made local news in 2015 by offering to perform a satanic ritual at Bremerton High School’s football game in response to Coach Joe Kennedy praying at the 50 yard line with his team.
“We really don’t think it’s right for the state to be promoting one religion over the other,” chapter founder Lilith Starr said at the time. “We really want to make the point that this is not just a Christian forum. If it’s going to be open, it’s going to be open to everyone, including us.”
The Satanic Temple said the group is a non-theistic religion, meaning its congregation does not believe in or worship literal, supernatural deities such as gods or the devil. The group has Seven Fundamental Tenets instead of a holy book.
Quixem Ramirez, Congregation of Washington satanists allowed to perform ritual at State Capitol, KOMO News, Wednesday, February 19th 2020