A Satanist in Deerfield Beach, Florida, has requested that a Satanic prayer open a City Hall meeting just days after the Supreme Court ruled that prayers said at government meetings do not necessarily violate the Constitution.
The New Times of Broward reported
that Chaz Stevens, a self-described "Professional Troublemaker," wrote a letter to City Attorney Andrew Maurodis that read in part, "With the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling . . . I hereby am requesting I be allowed to open a Commission meeting praying for my God, my divine spirit, my Dude in Charge. Be advised, I am a Satanist."
Stevens said he is not really a Satanist, but is in fact an atheist exploring the separation of church and state. He said the most recent decision handed down by the court was wrong, just like "Plessy v. Ferguson," which supported racial segregation. The Supreme Court case he references in his prayer request, Town of Greece, New York v. Galloway, found that of that city's 120 meetings each year, only four were non-Christian in nature. Stevens aims to balance that out with a few "Hail Satans," apparently.
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"If the Supreme Court wants to open up the door to this, Satan and I will walk through," he explained.
No stranger to controversy, Stevens last year got Florida Gov. Rick Scott to allow him to erect his own religious monument next to the Deerfield Beach nativity scene. The monument he chose? An 8-foot tall pole made of Pabst Blue Ribbon beer cans in honor of Festivus, a parody holiday popularized in part by the TV show "Seinfeld."
"I just want equal billing. We allow various religious nutjobs to give a prayer. They pray to Jesus, who is make-believe; God, who is make-believe; why not Satan, who is make-believe?" Stevens said, explaining his latest stunt. "Why discriminate against one make-believe god over another? Satan and I are being circumvented. The City of Deerfield Beach has once again declared war on religion — and this time it's Satanism."
In addition to sending his letter to the city attorney, The Raw Story reported that Stevens also sent a missive to Sherrie Routt
, an administrative assistant with the Department of Management. There, he affirms that he would again like to erect the Festivus pole this coming December, and also asks to open a state government meeting with a Satanic prayer.
"Satan is a cool dude. Think of all the people he's in charge of. Do you want to be stuck listening to harp music in the afterlife? Hell no. I want to drink beer and hang with hookers," Steven commented.
Asked by NPR
what his prayer might say should his request be granted, he said, "O mighty Lord Satan / teach us to become strong and wise! / Teach us to vanquish the enemies / of our freedom and well-being!"
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