Satanists ‘Very Interested’ In Ted Cruz and Trump, Too

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The spokesperson for the Satanic Temple opens up about their endorsement of the horror movie ‘The Witch,’ women’s rights, and the Temple’s thoughts on Donald Trump and Ted Cruz.

What does a 17th century-set movie about witchcraft have to do with the 2016 Presidential election, Ted Cruz, and the future of America? Everything, according to the Satan-celebrating leaders of the Satanic Temple.

The “non-theistic religious organization” has thrown its support behind The Witch, the Sundance horror hit that opens this weekend with the tale of a teenage Pilgrim girl suspected of consorting with the Devil in isolated, Puritanical New England.

“We have people running for office, leaders in our communities, who still reference and somewhat fetishize this period of early America,” Satanic Temple national spokesperson Jex Blackmore told The Daily Beast.

“They often say, ‘America was founded on these Christian values’—and I think you see [in The Witch] that what happens in this very religious, almost pre-American era is that religious values were quite destructive. It pulls on an American history that is something of a black sheep period that we gloss over and brings it to the forefront to ask: Is this something we really want to return to?”

With nearly 100,000 reported members worldwide and a vested interest in both the outcome of November’s election and the future of America, the Satanic Temple, which has members across the globe, is keeping a close watch on crusading Christian GOP candidate Cruz.

“We’re very interested in Ted Cruz’s campaign since he often discusses religious liberty,” said Blackmore, although she was quick to emphasize that the Satanic Temple has yet to officially endorse any White House hopeful on either side of the aisle.

Such an endorsement would understandably conjure confusion, explained Blackmore, who also serves as Director of the Temple’s Detroit chapter. As a religious organization built on securing individual liberties in the name of the Dark One—at least, the concept of Satan as an icon of rebellion and opposition to institutionalized religious oppression—the organization is prepared to take on any prospective POTUS, be it Cruz or Trump or Hillary.

Cruz in particular has been courting the evangelical vote by playing up his Southern Baptist faith with a scripture-quoting strategy that scored him a big win in Iowa. Religious devotion, meanwhile, has become a form of campaign currency not just for Cruz but also rivals like Donald Trump, who has loudly cast stones at Cruz’s piety and yesterday lashed out at the Pope for calling his own Christianity into question.

But Cruz has played up his Christian card more than his opponents—and that’s landed him at the top of the Satanists’ watch list. “That’s really his major platform—he appeals to this sort of conservative religious voter,” said Blackmore. “We’re really interested in his interpretation of what religious liberty means as one that seems to come across as only applying to Christians pretty exclusively, and how he uses that rhetoric to push an agenda that opposes access to healthcare for women, for example, or how he continues to promote the concept of traditional marriage on a religious platform as being one of exclusively his own views.”

“I certainly think we’re going to be responding as those kinds of issues continue to come up in the election year,” she said, “regardless of who’s nominated in the GOP or Democratic Party.”

The control over female bodies is another theme of The Witch that’s ringing alarmingly true today as states and presidential candidates battle over the defunding of Planned Parenthood. The film’s heroine finds herself increasingly victimized by a patriarchal Christian system that seeks to control her actions, thoughts, body, and budding sexuality. She has no recourse for the repressive punishment that rains down from her extremist father, who bellows one of the film’s memorable lines: ‘Did ye make some unholy bond with that goat?”

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SOURCE: The Daily Beast
Jen Yamato