Hundreds were in attendance for the Satanic Temple’s Rally for the First Amendment at the Arkansas State Capitol on Thursday afternoon.
The rally included The Satanic Temple’s infamous Baphomet statue to the state capitol to support the First Amendment and religious plurality.
Pictures show many different groups waiting on Lucien Greaves to bring Baphomet to the state capitol steps.
The Arkansas legislature approved the placement of a Ten Commandments monument on government property in 2015. After the Arkansas legislature declined a donation from The Satanic Temple, the group filed a lawsuit to have their statue of Baphomet placed on the same grounds.
Today’s rally included five speakers: Lucien Greaves, the Satanic Temple’s spokesperson and co-founder; Tonya Hardwick, Chad Jones, Sadie Satanas, and Leewood Thomas. More information on each speaker is below.
“The event is intended to be an inclusive gathering where The Satanic Temple will be celebrating pluralism along with Christian and secular speakers. People of many faiths will come together at the Capitol to reject the Arkansas State Legislature’s efforts to privilege one religion over others,” explains Lucien Greaves, spokesman and co-founder of The Satanic Temple.
Lucien Greaves is the spokesman and co-founder of The Satanic Temple. Greaves has provided commentary on social issues in numerous media appearances, including MSNBC, NPR, CNN, Time Magazine and Rolling Stone. In addition, he has spoken on the topics of Satanism, Secularism and The Satanic Temple at Universities throughout the United States.
Tonya Hartwick Burt is a resident of Guy, Arkansas and will be graduating from Colorado Christian University in December with a degree in Criminal Justice. She is a true example of the resurrection power of Christ Jesus. She was dead in her sins and now experiences freedom in Christ. She serves as Auxiliary member alongside her husband in Gideon Internationals.
Chad Jones is a Conway-based minister with Arkansas Progressive Christians (APC). APC is a Christian organization that seeks to show Christ’s love to all people. APC fights back against bigotry, prejudice and discrimination that may occur in the name of the Christian faith.
Sadie Satanas is current Co-Chapter Head of the Satanic Temple Santa Cruz, TST’s sole California chapter. As a transgender female, activist and sex worker, she is committed to the quest for religious pluralism and equality in our country. Sadie strongly believes all faiths deserve equal footing in the United States and is dedicated to fighting for the rights of others as well as her own.
Leewood Thomas was a founding member of the Arkansas Society of Freethinkers (ASF) and served as its first Vice-President in the mid 1990’s. Leewood served as media liaison for ASF for many years. More recently, he founded the Saline Atheist & Skeptic Society which has applied for its own “Wall of Separation” monument for the Capitol grounds not long after the 10 Commandments bill passed.