October 21, 2016 — Professor Barry McDonald was interviewed today (audio) on the NPR/KPCC radio program AirTalk. The segment, titled “Should schools permit satanic after school clubs?” considered the recent decision by the Los Angeles Unified School District to reject a request to let After School Satan Club into a Panorama City elementary school.
Via 89.3 KPCC AirTalk:
As reported by the Los Angeles Times, the club’s L.A. chapter would have been one of several started in schools across the country, including Portland, Salt Lake City and Detroit. LAUSD said in a statement that the organization’s rejection was due not receiving the proper paperwork from the club. But Ali Kellog, the chapter head for The Satanic Temple Los Angeles says the club has been stonewalled by the school district.
The After School Satan Club is headed by The Satanic Temple in Salem, Massachusetts. The club has been pushing to branch out to schools across the country as a counterpart to the Good News Clubs, an after school Christian club. Officials from The Satanic Temple have said they believe the Good News Clubs to be fringe, zealous and hateful, and not representative of true Christianity.
According to the Satanic Temple, their religion “does not promote belief in a personal Satan. . . The Satanist should actively work to hone critical thinking and exercise reasonable agnosticism in all things.”
What do you think of the After School Satan Club? Is it a breach of religious freedom and First Amendment rights to prohibit them in schools?
Ali Kellog, chapter head for The Satanic Temple Los Angeles; she created the curriculum for the After School Satan Club which was presented to the LAUSD
Barry McDonald, professor of law at Pepperdine School of Law; he is an expert on the U.S. Supreme Court, Constitutional and intellectual property law
The audio of the segment may be found at www.scpr.org