The Satanic Temple erected an altar inside the Iowa State Capitol building, claiming that the stunt was done to guarantee their representation within a “public forum.”
According to the Daily Caller, the altar consisted of a silver ram’s head on a mannequin’s body, complete with a red cape, flowers, and candles. One of the group’s co-founders, Lucien Greaves, smugly declared that the group will “really relish the opportunity to be represented in a public forum.”
“We don’t have a church on every street corner,” Greaves continued. “My feeling is if people don’t like our display in public forums, they don’t have to engage with them. They don’t have to view them.”
While State Representative Jon Dunwell (R-Iowa) ultimately determined that he “doesn’t want the state evaluating and making determinations about religions,” others expressed their opposition to the display. The Dallas Center’s Shellie Flockhart organized a prayer group on Wednesday to show public opposition to the altar, hoping that the event would make people “realize spiritual warfare is real.”
“It’s a very dark, evil force, and I truly hope people know how to battle that,” Flockhart added.
The Satanic Temple is known for repeatedly carrying out deliberately offensive publicity stunts, claiming their displays to be protected by the First Amendment right to freedom of religion. The group also holds left-wing political beliefs, claiming that it supports abortion due to the procedure allegedly being part of its spiritual rituals.