Satanic Temple to fight Texas abortion law, cites religious freedom
AUSTIN, Texas - The Satanic Temple said they have a strategy for women to access the abortion drug. Take it, as part of religious expression.
The founder describes them as a nontheistic religious group. "By nontheistic we mean we don't worship a literal deity. We view Satan as a metaphorical construct as the ultimate rebel against tyranny," said Lucien Greaves, founder.
This group is not the Church of Satan, an organization they are often mixed up with. Greaves said they promote social justice, equality, and the separation of church and state.
Their latest involvement is now with the state of Texas.
They call the latest "Heartbeat Bill," draconian. The bill bans abortions at six weeks. "For us for personhood to be achieved and for those protections to be in effect, there needs to be some type of higher cognitive function," he said.
"We really feel that the freedom of choice is something that belongs to our religious membership and they should be able to on religious liberty grounds maintain it," said Greaves.
The Satanic Temple recently sent a letter to the FDA asking the church to be allowed access to the abortion-inducing drug for its rituals. They are working on filing a lawsuit.
"We've encountered one argument of "Well abortions aren't religious.’ Well that is not necessarily the case, the question of whether something is religious or not is up to the person who is bringing the lawsuit," said Matthew Kezhaya, the attorney for TST.
The Satanic Temple believes bodily autonomy and science are of utmost importance, and abortion ritual is an expression of that belief and the heartbeat bill violates their religious freedom.
"By regulating the context in which the ritual happens you're basically regulating the ritual itself. If I say nobody can buy wine, well that is affecting the Catholics’ ability to do mass," said Kezhaya.
If TST is allowed access to the abortion drug, any woman can request access to it. The person, however, must become a member of TST. Greaves said no one will have to undergo any dramatic measures to become a member. He welcomes all.
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