June 2020 is developing into a unique moment in history that has brought together seemingly unrelated issues and highlighted the intersectionality of oppressions. Black Lives Matter protests have marched across Pride month with outcries against police brutality in the U.S. and around the world. It echoes the Stonewall riots, which black transgender women—who’ve often been victims of police brutality–were an integral part of. These women have been forerunners in the struggle against racism and the defense of LGBTQAI+ rights.
All these struggles have been embedded in American history with each one flaring up at certain times, usually after a major public tragedy. While mass demonstrations regarding these issues normally occur after a flagrant incident, the underlying issues are systemic and insidious. Even though there have been minor advances in each cause, it is the system that enables these oppressions to persist that must be dismantled and restructured to enable the abolition of racism, homophobia, transphobia, sexism, police discrimination and other abuses of power. Because of this hierarchical system that allows for white supremacy and privilege, saying “Black Lives Matter” is so important. To deny acknowledgment that some lives matter more in our society is the paramount reason why this phrase is crucial. The pushback against the BLM rallying cry insisting that all lives matter is ignorant and naïve. Yes, all lives should matter equally, but the reality is that some are valued less. It is easy to claim “all lives matter” when you haven’t experienced firsthand the other side of the racist system. If all lives did matter equally, it wouldn’t be so hard for everyone to say these simple three words, “Black. Lives. Matter.”
Multiple facets comprise the current wave of civil unrest that deserve closer scrutiny. The power of protest, when protests turn into riots, how society reacts to both, destruction of monuments, the politics of civil unrest, the policing of society and the militarization of police are just a few of these facets. While all these conversations are important, the one glaring commonality among them is racism. If we take a closer look at each of these issues, racism plays a role. Racism is built into every aspect of our society and systems we live by. Being that this is the case, racism needs to work into how we educate our children, how we choose our leaders, how we consume and spend our money, and every facet to the way we conduct ourselves in our daily lives. Black people and people of color are forced to consider race every day; it is a privilege if you don’t have to.
Racism and all other forms of oppression are contradictory and completely incompatible with Satanism, particularly The Satanic Temple’s Satanism. Of course we have all been raised within the current white supremacist and patriarchal culture and so have internalized a lot of racist and other discriminatory thought, but through Satanism and the tenets, we can start to unpack and dismantle the system within ourselves and work towards dismantling the system externally. In a 2017 Washington Post article, TST co-founder, Lucien Greaves states, “…it must be said that nothing could be more antithetical to modern non-theistic Satanism than racist ideologies. We embrace a large diversity of individuals from a wide spectrum of political and cultural backgrounds, but we’re all unified by our respect for individual rights and pluralism.”
We are unified under Satanism, by the tenets, and by our collective urgency to obliterate racism and the systems that allow it to remain a part of our lives. Racism is our adversary; it’s an obstruction of justice and we must resist it and think critically to overcome it. As Lilith stated in the Alphabet of Sirach, “I will not lie below. We are equal to each other inasmuch as we were both created from the earth.”
Finally, to cite the Invocation, “Let us stand firm against any and all arbitrary authority that threatens the personal sovereignty of One or All.”
Hail Lilith! Hail Satan! Fuck Racism!