What others say: Devil’s in the minutes

  • Monday, August 15, 2016 7:48pm
  • Opinion

The Devil was given his due Tuesday night when a member of the Satanic Temple gave the invocation for the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly meeting.

“Let us embrace the Luciferian impulse to eat of the tree of knowledge and dissipate our blissful and comforting delusions of old,” said Iris Fontana, according to press reports.

The invocation — which was offered while most Assembly members stood respectfully — concluded with the phrase “Hail Satan.”

Hail Satan.

Not a typical phrase to be offered as a guiding light for a municipal meeting. And as we’re not well-versed in the finer points of theistic Satanism, we referenced a few dictionaries to find a basic definition of whom or what Satan is.

Webster’s New World College Dictionary defines Satan as “the great enemy of humankind and of goodness; the Devil: usually identified with Lucifer, the chief of the fallen angels,” and as, “any of various celestial beings functioning as accuser or critic of humanity.”

The American Heritage Dictionary defines Satan as “a powerful spiritual being” in Abrahamic religions, “the tempter and persecutor of humanity, sometimes considered as an angel who rebelled against God and became the Devil.”

Or, this from Wiktionary: “The supreme evil spirit in the Abrahamic religions, who tempts humanity and rules Hell; the Devil.”

For some folks who view municipal government — or any government — as a special circle of Hell, invoking Satan at the start of a meeting might make sense.

The rest of us are just thinking, “What the hell?”

When our government officials are comfortable with standing at respectful attention while their meeting opens with a call for obeisance to “the great enemy of humankind and goodness,” something, somewhere, has gone very, very wrong.

It suggests that we no longer seek to avoid evil; we now actively embrace evil.

Hail Satan. Hail Temptor and Persecutor of Humanity. Hail Supreme Evil Spirit.

Is this what has become acceptable “wisdom” in the halls of government?

— The Ketchikan Daily News, Aug. 12, 2016

More in Opinion

Apayauq Reitan, the first transgender woman to participate in the Iditarod, tells the House Education Committee on March 30, 2023, why she opposes a bill restricting transgender rights. (Mark Sabbatini/Juneau Empire file photo)
Opinion: The imaginary transgender sports crisis

House Bill 183 is a right-wing solution to a problem that doesn’t exist now and never will.

Sen. Jesse Bjorkman, a Nikiski Republican, speaks in favor of overriding a veto of Senate Bill 140 during floor debate of a joint session of the Alaska State Legislature on Monday, March 18, 2024. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
Sen. Jesse Bjorkman: Session ends with budget, dividend and bills passed

Capitol Corner: Legislators report back from Juneau

The Alaska State Capitol. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire file photo)
Listen to PAs; support Senate Bill 115: Modernizing PA Practice in Alaska

Health care is rapidly evolving, demanding a more flexible and responsive system

Mount Redoubt can be seen across Cook Inlet from North Kenai Beach on Thursday, July 2, 2022. (Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion file photo)
Opinion: Hilcorp Alaska: Powering Southcentral Alaska — past, present and future

Hilcorp Alaska has and will continue to fully develop our Cook Inlet basin leasehold

Sen. Jesse Bjorkman, a Nikiski Republican, speaks in favor of overriding a veto of Senate Bill 140 during floor debate of a joint session of the Alaska State Legislature on Monday, March 18, 2024 (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
Sen. Jesse Bjorkman: Collegiality matters

Capitol Corner: Legislators report back from Juneau

Juneau Empire file photo
Larry Persily.
Opinion: Alaska might as well embrace the past

The governor, legislators, municipal officials and business leaders are worried that the Railbelt will run short of natural gas before the end of the decade

The Alaska State Capitol on March 1. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Opinion: Physicians oppose Alaska Senate Bill 115 — Independent Practice for PAs

Alaskans don’t want access to just any health care, they want access to high quality care

Norm McDonald is the deputy director of Fire Protection for the Alaska Division of Forestry & Fire Protection. (Photo courtesy Bureau of Land Management Alaska Fire Service)
The Swan Lake Fire can be seen from above on Monday, Aug. 26, 2019, on the Kenai Peninsula, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Alaska Wildland Fire Information)
Opinion: This wildfire prevention month, reflect on ways to protect each other and our communities from wildfire

Alaskans saw what happened in Canada last year, and they know it can happen here too

Jason Sodergren and retired veterinarian Ralph Broshes capture and attend to crane shot with an arrow, July 9, 2023, in Homer, Alaska. (Photo provided by Nina Faust)
What happened to the ‘Arrowshot Crane’?

In many animal rescues, the outcome is fairly quickly known, but the… Continue reading