How Satanists are weaponizing religious liberty laws to overturn pro-life legislation

By Jonathon Van Maren

One June 9, the U.S. 8th Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed a lawsuit launched by an anonymous woman, “Judy Doe,” against a Missouri law that requires abortion patients to receive a pamphlet noting that, “The life of each human being begins at conception. Abortion will terminate the life of a separate, unique, living human being.” Doe, who is a member of the Satanic Temple, argued that the law violated her religious freedom as a Satanist, claiming (erroneously) that the scientific facts laid out in the pamphlet were specifically Catholic beliefs.

This is the second loss for the downtrodden Satanist—the appeals court is agreeing with the ruling of a federal district judge in 2019—and the court highlighted the obvious fact that all viewpoints align with someone’s religious beliefs. “Any theory of when life [begins] necessarily aligns with some religious beliefs and not others,” the court stated. “So under Doe’s theory, Missouri’s only option would be to avoid legislating in this area altogether.”

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