The Satanic Temple has just settled a lawsuit against Netflix. In its new series, The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, Netflix has apparently included some scenes involving a Baphomet statue. I haven’t actually seen the show myself, but I’m assuming something nasty must happen in one or more of those scenes, because the Satanic Temple took issue with it. Specifically, they sued the company for violating their copyright on a Baphomet statue that was specially designed by the Temple for its campaign against a 10 Commandments monument in Oklahoma. Netflix must have felt they had a pretty strong case, because they caved and agreed to make a settlement.
Satanic Temple co-founder Lucien Greaves had this to say:
“I’m amazed that anybody is confused as to why we would seek legal remedy over Sabrina using our monument. Would they be as understanding of a fictional show that used a real mosque as the HQ of a terrorist cell? A fictional Blood Libel tale implicating real world Jews?”
No doubt many readers will consider this hyperbole, but Greaves has a point here. Whenever you see a Satanist character in a movie or a TV show, that character is always an evil, bloodthirsty psychopath, and audiences just blindly accept it. But if this type of caricature were being promoted against Jews or Muslims, the outcry would be astronomical (and rightfully so).
In 1973, a woman named Michelle Smith was treated by a psychiatrist named Lawrence Pazder. Under hypnosis, Smith “remembered” being repeatedly abused by a “satanic cult” as a child. She was allegedly tortured, locked in a cage, and forced to mutilate several babies, all in the name of Satan. These stories were published in Pazder’s 1980 book, Michelle Remembers, which became an overnight sensation. Next thing anyone knew, other hypnotherapists started parading their patients around on TV, calling them “Satanic abuse survivors” and making a shit-ton of money off of them. Sensationalists like Geraldo Rivera popularized these stories, bullying their viewers into accepting these “survivors” and their stories at face value. People started believing there really was an international conspiracy of Satanists who were sexually abusing and cannibalizing little children. Even psychiatric and law enforcement professionals blindly accepted these stories as true. Just being a daycare worker and having someone accuse you of being a “Satanist” (perhaps because you enjoy heavy metal music, or because you play Dungeons & Dragons) was enough to get you prosecuted for alleged child abuse. As with any witch hunt in history, no evidence was required; countless people were thrown in prison and prohibited from seeing their children just on the basis of rumors and hearsay. This was the “Satanic Panic” of the 1980s.
A fantastic article; I can fully identify and agree. I’ll be addressing something related to this in an upcoming sermon. Stay tuned!
This might seem like old news, but this is a subject that’s always been important to me. I’m circulating it because it demonstrates that the bizarre cultural phenomenon of “alternative facts” is nothing new, and that this phenomenon can lead to some truly terrifying consequences. Please, please, PLEASE be careful what you choose to believe.