An elementary school in Moline, Illinois is making headlines after administrators permitted the circulation of a flyer for an after-school Satan club.
Meetings for the club, sponsored and hosted by the Satanic Temple, takes place after hours on school property.
The flyer went viral on social media, and describes the club’s activities as being guided by “a uniform syllabus that emphasizes a scientific, nationalist, non-superstitious worldview.” The meetings are scheduled for five dates throughout may at Jane Addams Elementary School, with the first taking place on Thursday.
The club is aimed at first through fifth-graders, and promises that attendees will experience puzzles, games, arts and crafts projects, as well as science and nature activities.
The flyer also states that, according to a spokesperson from the Moline-Coal Valley School District, “policies and administrative procedures… allow for community use of its publicly funded facilities outside the school day.” The spokesperson added that religious groups must pay a fee to rent the school’s facilities.
The statement also claims that the school’s “focus remains on student safety and… achievement,” and says that all promotional materials and flyers for groups and events are meant for lobby display only, and not mass distribution. The spokesperson added that the district is required by law to provide equal access to all groups and said that students require parental permission to attend after-school events.
A photo of the flyer was shared on Twitter by Libs of Tik Tok.
An elementary school in Illinois gave out these flyers promoting an after school satan club pic.twitter.com/ieF1wSZYds
— Libs of Tik Tok (@libsoftiktok) January 12, 2022
As the flyer notes, the “scientific, non-superstitious worldview” part gives the group away. The flippant use of Satanism as a cover for atheist propaganda has long been a tongue-in-cheek method for demonstrating the limits of church-state separation in America.
Similar stunts were pulled at the Washington State Capitol building in 2020, when Satanic Temple representative Tarkus Claypool held a satanic invocation in place of a Christian prayer as a means of protesting the “state… promoting one religion over the other.” Claypool complained that legislators select “largely Judeo-Christian clergy” for religious rites because they’re “uncontroversial and politically safe.”
Satanist or atheist, the difference is small for parents concerned about the effects of such doctrines on elementary schoolchildren.
Author: Amy White