Statement on Satanic Temple literature distribution in Orange County (Fla.) Schools

The Satanic Temple has announced that it will be distributing literature to students in Orange County Public Schools this year in Florida. The statement comes on the heels of FFRF’s victory in which the schools promised to not censor any of FFRF’s atheist literature. FFRF asked to distribute literature after an evangelical Christian organization distributed bibles in the schools. The schools initially agreed, but later tried to prohibit nearly all of FFRF’s literature, forcing FFRF to sue for equal treatment.

FFRF does not believe that satanists or Christians or even atheists should be distributing literature to public school students. We have given Orange County every opportunity to close the distribution forum and repeatedly asked them to do so. Each time, they have refused. FFRF does not endorse the New York based Satanic Temple’s literature any more than we would endorse the bible or think it should be given to students. However, Orange County Public Schools cannot legally prevent the temple from distributing its literature.

One thing should be absolutely clear: Orange County Schools has chosen to allow these groups in. Orange County is allowing Christians, atheists and satanists to distribute literature to students, but it does not have to.

FFRF will only distribute its own materials this January, including pamphlets such as An X-Rated Book: Sex & Obscenity in the Bible

FFRF has remained consistent throughout this ordeal: Public schools should not be allowing the distribution of bibles, atheist materials or any other religious or nonreligious material. Religion is best left to the private sphere. We do not want the Satanic Temple preying on students any more than we want evangelical Christians preying on students. We again urge Orange County to close the distribution forum and religious battleground it has willingly opened. Orange County Schools should keep its public schools secular.

Freedom From Religion Foundation

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