The Satanic Temple is challenging Missouri state abortion regulations in court this fall, arguing that laws requiring that women be provided information about their unborn babies violate their religious freedom.
The Fader reports the Satanic Temple spokesperson Jex Blackmore announced the lawsuit Friday, another step in a long battle between the group and pro-life leaders in Missouri. The Missouri State Court of Appeals and United State Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit are scheduled to hear the case in September.
Blackmore said the lawsuit is on behalf of “Mary Doe,” a member of The Satanic Temple from Missouri who aborted her unborn baby in 2015 at a Planned Parenthood.
The group alleges that Doe’s religious freedom was trampled upon by the state informed consent laws, which require that women undergo an ultrasound and receive information about their unborn baby’s development, abortion risks and alternatives to abortion. The laws also require that the woman take 72 hours to consider the information and her decision before going through with the abortion.
According to the Satanists, these laws violated two core tenants of Doe’s and Satanists’ beliefs: First, “One’s body is inviolable, subject to one’s own will alone,” and, second, “Beliefs should conform to our best scientific understanding of the world. We should take care never to distort scientific facts to fit our beliefs.”
Here’s more from the report:
A second violation of Mary Doe’s rights occurred when she was given anti-abortion propaganda claiming that human life begins at conception, the Temple claims. The belief is based in specific religious beliefs that run against Doe’s own as a member of the Temple. “[T]he First Amendment’s Establishment and Free Exercise Clause… forbids the government from establishing an official religion, but also prohibits government actions that unduly favor one religion over another. It also prohibits the government from unduly preferring religion over non-religion, or non-religion over religion. The Missouri Tenet adopts the religious belief that the life of a human being starts at conception, and in doing so, violates the Establishment Clause.”
But these are not Christian or Jewish or Buddhist or any other religion’s beliefs. Scientifically, it is well established that a unique new human life comes into being at the moment of conception. Likewise, the information women receive as part of informed consent — facts about their unborn baby’s development and abortion risks – also are backed up by strong scientific research.
This radical Satanists group has been trying to stop fact-based laws in Missouri for years. They have staged bizarre and grotesque protests, launched publicity campaigns following them step by step as they plan and arrange to kill their unborn babies in abortions, and repeatedly challenged these laws in court.
Last year, Breitbart described the Satanic Temple’s actions as a “pro-abortion crusade to come to the aid of America’s largest abortion provider,” Planned Parenthood.
In 2016, a federal judge threw out the Satanic Temple’s challenge of the Missouri 72-hour waiting period law. U.S. District Judge Henry Edward Autrey ruled that the plaintiff “Mary Doe” failed to show “sufficiently concrete injuries” resulting from the law. The Satanic Temple lost a similar challenge at the state level earlier that year.
In April 2016, pro-life advocates outside of a Detroit, Michigan Planned Parenthood faced a disturbing scene when a group from the Satanic Temple arrived to counter-protest wearing baby masks and carrying whips. Citizens for a Pro-Life Society organized the pro-life event as part of a larger #ProtestPP movement to expose the abortion giant’s deadly trade of aborting unborn babies and trafficking their body parts.
The Satanic Temple is well-known in Michigan for openly challenging pro-lifers’ work. Last winter, its leader Jex Blackmore wrote a blog about her experience aborting her unborn baby. She called the experience “surreal.” Then on Good Friday in March, the group organized a counter-protest to mock pro-lifers who were holding an Easter prayer vigil outside of an Ann Arbor abortion facility, LifeNews reported.