I have a feeling that quite a few people are not going to be happy about this. The IRS recently granted The Satanic Temple tax-exempt status, which means the organization now has the same legal rights and protections that other religions enjoy.
Lucien Greaves, the President of The Satanic Temple, decided to pursue the status after President Trump signed a “religious freedom” executive order in 2017. Greaves wrote in the Temple’s newsletter, “As ‘the religious’ are increasingly gaining ground as a privileged class, we must ensure that this privilege is available to all, and that superstition doesn’t gain exclusive rights over non-theistic religions or non-belief.”
Greaves added that organizations needed to ensure that “atheistic and secular non-profits, advancing a distinct religious opinion and/or opinion upon religion, are themselves rightful beneficiaries of religious tax exemption as well.” The organization is based in Salem, Massachusetts (naturally).
The Satanic Temple was founded in 2013 as a bit of a joke, meant to address the increasing confusion over the separation of church and state in America. Since then it has blossomed into a religious and activist movement, and it has seen a huge increase in membership since Trump took office.
If you don’t know that much about The Satanic Temple, take a look at their list of beliefs. You might be surprised by what they stand for, including “One should strive to act with compassion and empathy toward all creatures in accordance with reason.”
An interesting development, indeed. What do you think about this news? Share your comments with us!