Satanists Also Locked in Heated Abortion Debate, Apparently

Trick question: What do Satanists and Christians have in common? Well, not much —except both groups apparently aren't sure what their stance is on abortion.

While Christians have long been split into pro-life and pro-choice camps, the last thing I would have ever expected is for a similar split to take place in the Satanist community. But apparently, that's exactly what happened earlier this month when Satanists from two different factions squared off in a heated debated over abortion, with one group even labeling certain protesters' chants "diabolical."

The devilish rift within Satanism began two weeks ago when Texas lawmakers debated a controversial initiative to limit Texas abortions. During the debate, a few pro-choice protesters apparently attempted to drown out the voices of pro-lifers by (satirically) yelling "Hail Satan!" Because the hashtag #HailSatan quickly gained traction on Twitter, the UK Church of Satan — which as far as I can tell is not an official organization — weighed into the debate on July 3:

Unfortunate to see Satan's name used in such a diabolical manner. Another example of what 'Satanism' doesn't represent. #HailSatan

— UK Church of Satan (@UKChurchofSatan) July 3, 2013

 After receiving a somewhat surprised reaction from a few Twitter community members, the group expanded on its views:

Why wouldn't Satanism be pro-life? What else is there? We are all free to make choices. Agreeable or not. Everyone is entitled to choice.

— UK Church of Satan (@UKChurchofSatan) July 5, 2013

Whatever British Satanists might believe, a few American Satanists apparently weren't very happy with this stance. As Magus Peter H. Gilmore, high priest of the Church of Satan, told CNN, the UK Church of Satan doesn't even exist.

"I have not authorized any of our UK members to create such a thing claiming to represent our organization, its members and our philosophy," Gilmore said. "So, whoever is behind that feed is committing a fraud."

He added that the "organization, founded by Anton LaVey in 1966, is worldwide and we have many members throughout the UK and none of them have heard of any self-proclaimed 'Church of Satan in England.'"

In a victory for pro-choice activists everywhere, the head of Satanism proclaimed that the Church of Satan does indeed consider "the use of abortion to be the purview of the woman whose body is carrying the child."

Whatever Magus Gilmore says, however, it seems that the UK Church of Satan is not ready to renounce its pro-life stance:

(2/3) But life is sacred and should be valued as such. We all have the abilty to create life and care for it. If we choose.

— UK Church of Satan (@UKChurchofSatan) July 9, 2013

Looks like Texas Republicans have a new ally!  

How much do you trust the information in this article?

Michael Shammas

Second-year Harvard Law student, politico, Breaking Bad fan, cynical idealist, coffee addict, & Duke sports fanatic. Contact me at mshammas@jd16.law.harvard.edu.

MORE FROM

Women beer drinkers finally get the Beer for Her they never asked for

Why drink a rugged manly beer when you can have Aurosa's pink girly beer instead?!

Six months after the Women’s March on Washington, the Resistance Revival has a message for Trump

"Well I/ Went down to the White House and I/ Took back what they stole from me," the Resistance Revival Chorus sang in a Times Square flash mob last weekend.

20 attorneys general write letter urging Betsy DeVos to keep sexual assault protections

The attorneys general reminded DeVos that scrapping Title IX guidance will have a chilling effect on sexual assault and rape reporting rates.

New study suggests high workloads and aging doctor population means looming OB-GYN shortage

Obstetricians and gynecologists are overworked at nearing retirement age — without a younger contingent to replace them.

Why pro-life doctors want the First Amendment to protect their right to lie to patients

Crisis pregnancy centers believe they should be exempt from a law saying they should inform patients about all their medical options, including abortions.

‘Brown Girls’ wants to tell women of color’s stories in all their messy, complicated glory

Creators Fatimah Asghar and Sam Bailey want to let their characters break free of the neat identity categories people are wont to place them in.

Women beer drinkers finally get the Beer for Her they never asked for

Why drink a rugged manly beer when you can have Aurosa's pink girly beer instead?!

Six months after the Women’s March on Washington, the Resistance Revival has a message for Trump

"Well I/ Went down to the White House and I/ Took back what they stole from me," the Resistance Revival Chorus sang in a Times Square flash mob last weekend.

20 attorneys general write letter urging Betsy DeVos to keep sexual assault protections

The attorneys general reminded DeVos that scrapping Title IX guidance will have a chilling effect on sexual assault and rape reporting rates.

New study suggests high workloads and aging doctor population means looming OB-GYN shortage

Obstetricians and gynecologists are overworked at nearing retirement age — without a younger contingent to replace them.

Why pro-life doctors want the First Amendment to protect their right to lie to patients

Crisis pregnancy centers believe they should be exempt from a law saying they should inform patients about all their medical options, including abortions.

‘Brown Girls’ wants to tell women of color’s stories in all their messy, complicated glory

Creators Fatimah Asghar and Sam Bailey want to let their characters break free of the neat identity categories people are wont to place them in.