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Florida Rejects Satanic Temple Holiday Display Application

Florida Department of Management Services

Amidst a growing number of holiday displays at the Florida Capitol, the state has rejected one from a group calling itself the Satanic Temple for being “grossly offensive.” A group promoting separation of church and state says the Temple should sue because the state is favoring one religion over another.

The rejected Satanic Temple display is a 3-D depiction of Satan falling from heaven into hell accompanied by a Bible verse recounting the fall.  It also said “Happy Holidays from the Satanic Temple.”

Freedom from Religion Foundation lawyer Andrew Seidel says the state has shown an unconstitutional preference for Christianity.

“The government has decided that one biblical scene is offensive and one biblical scene is acceptable. And legally speaking I don’t think they have a leg to stand on," he says.

Seidel’s group has a Winter Solstice banner on display at the Capitol. That’s alongside a Flying Spaghetti Monster, a Festivus pole and the nativity scene that started the debate.

The state Department of Management Services declined to comment for this story. Their e-mail to the Temple says “Your proposed display is grossly offensive during the holiday season.”

A Satanic Temple spokesperson did not return calls seeking comment.