Newsworthy EventI'm Jex Blackmore, national spokesperson for The Satanic Temple and organizer of the largest Satanic event in history. AMA!
Jul 29th 2015 by JexBlackmore • 33 Questions • 1590 Points
I am a member of The Satanic Temple Executive Ministry, a non-theistic religious organization that facilitates the communication and mobilization of politically aware Satanists and advocates for individual liberty. I'm also the Director of the Detroit Satanic Temple chapter (thesatanictempledetroit.com) and organizer of the Baphomet Unveiling this past Saturday the 25th - the largest Satanic event in history.
Verifing my identity: Website: http://thesatanictempledetroit.com/jex-blackmore-ama-on-july-28-2015-at-10-pm-edt/
UPDATE: It is past the midnight hour, my computer is turning into a broomstick and you people make me sick. Just kidding, this was a great experience. Thank you for all your questions, feel free to message me online if you have any further thoughts. Visit our website where you can find a wealth of information: http://thesatanictempledetroit.com/ HAIL SATAN
Whose genius idea was it to weed out protestors by having everyone in attendance sign a paper selling their souls to the devil? Did anyone actually leave at that point? Were there any other security protocols put in place that we may not have heard of?
The contract was my idea. As far as I know nobody left. We had a decoy location that ticket holders had to first visit before receiving the secondary location - which was one of four intersections surrounding the venue. Attendees then had to find a "psychopomp" wearing a red scarf and recite the passphrase "as above," and wait for the response "so below". They were then led by foot to the actual venue.
Did you change your name to make it sound satanic ?
I didn't change anything. I was born Satanic.
Has your group ever thought about changing your name to avoid poor preconceived notions of what your organization is about?
We have no interest in changing who we are to comfort the superstitious. We are Satanists, therefore we belong to a Satanic organization.
What is the most annoying misconception you come across, about Satan? And would you like to clear it here?
Most annoying misconception is that Satan is real. He's not.
Hi. :) Can you tell us a little about what Satanists believe in and what it means to be a Satanist?
I cannot speak for all Satanists. There are many different understandings of Satanism and Satanic philosophy. That beings said, Satanism stands for individual sovereignty in the face of tyranny, and the pursuit of knowledge even when that knowledge is dangerous. We believe in the power of individual will, not the collective consciousness of the mindless masses.
Which Detroit coney dog does the Satanic Temple endorse: Lafayette or American Coney Island?
We think all Coney islands should be endorsed equally.
What would you consider the goals of Satanism? In realistic terms.
To empower individuals to challenge tyrannical systems.
What's an out-standing point of view that many people don't know about your group?
What practices do you have?
Does your status affect your relationships with other people?
(1) Everyone involved is incredibly sincere, as opposed to being trolls. (2) Activism as worship. (3) Being a spokesperson who receives death threats occasionally gets in the way of my social life - In fact, I'm currently yelling at my funny guy for not coming up with a funny response to this.
How many souls were sold to the devil last weekend? What do you say to devout Christians (who don't know how to google) who are totally 100% convinced you're in league with the actual devil?
Approximately 666-700 souls were sold to the Devil. To those Christians whose minds are enslaved by biblical mythology we say: Don't waste your prayers on us.
How did you get involved with The Satanic Temple and the religion?
I became a Satanist after my experience within the church, learning that the what's natural was often condoned as "sinful" or "satanic". I got involved with the Temple after interviewing Lucien about the Temple right after they announced the formation of the organization.
If you found out a member threatened a theist or had violent extremist inclinations, what is your policy on that? And in extension, is there a standard of absolute honesty among members within the organization?
We have no tolerance for violent threats, racism, or misogyny within TST. I'm not sure I understand what you mean about absolute honesty. We respect our member's privacy and don't demand they indulge personal information or other content they are uncomfortable sharing.
We got 99 problems and a Setian ain't one.
What kind of involvement do you have with the legal challenges surrounding the 10 commandments at various courthouses and the potential placement of your statue?
What would you like to see happen with regards to religious symbols on state property?
What's your perspective with regards to the establishment clause?
(1) Our only involvement is in regards to our own attempt to install the Baphomet next to the 10 commandments statue in Oklahoma and wherever it goes next (hopefully Arkansas)
(2) We believe it's best that no displays of religion are promoted by our government. However, if there is to be any religious expression it is better that a plurality of beliefs are represented.
(3) The establishment clause should be upheld.
A: Which movie do you feel most embodies the spirit of Satanism?
B: Which album?
A: Pink Flamingos B: Defenders of the Faith – Judas Priest
Is there still talk of moving the Baphomet statue to Arkansas, and if so how is that whole thing going? As a Little Rock native, I absolutely cannot wait to sit in his lap!
We are currently reviewing the process to submit a display on capitol grounds. We will move ahead as legally permitted. I hope you get a chance to sit upon the lap of Lucifer!
What ever happened with Brian Werner of Vital Remains? He seemed like a big part of the Satanic Temple, and now isn't, as far as I know.
He was asked to resign.
Is it possible to have a wedding at your temple? Just yesterday, my girlfriend and I were having a conversation about marriage, and we both decided that if we ever opted to wed, we would want to tie the knot in a Satanic ceremony.
I've been meaning to call different organizations all day, but just haven't had the time. Imagine my excitement when I saw your AMA!
We are able to officiate weddings. Contact us if you decide to tie the knot.
Do you think Detroit will try to come after you guys during the Marche du Nain Rouge?
Everyday feels like the Marche du Nain Rouge!
How do you feel about Doug Mesner's past as an advocate of "Might is Right" philosophy? On his Three Ring Radio show with Shane Bugbee they both often made racist, sexist and anti-Semitic jokes. On one occasion they referred to Adam Parfrey as a money grubbing k***. Do you think he changed his views since then and that he reformed?
I'm embarrassed by that interview and cannot speak for Doug, however, I can tell you that as an organization we do not support the Might is Right philosophy, and if for whatever reason Doug was to begin promoting those ideals I would not continue my involvement with the Temple.
I met Anton LaVey in a book store in San Francisco quite a few years ago. Really nice guy. Read his book (The Satanic Bible) and it made a lot of good sense to me. Is the Satanic Temple part of or the same as the Satanic Church, and how close to LaVey's original ideas is it today?
We are not part of, nor do we endorse The Satanic Church. We find LaVey's ideas archaic. http://thesatanictempledetroit.com/about-us-2/
Hi Jex, Saw you on Let it Rip the other day. You held your own well but it seems at times like you're a little unpracticed in front of the cameras but I can totally understand that and I think you have a strong personality and it will come through consistently in time. My question is more organizational -- is TST moving forward with you more as the face of the organization over Lucien? Is Lucien still a part of TST, and if so has his role been diminished? I'm not a member but I'm what you would call an interested observer who has followed you guys for a few years and being supportive while thinking of joining.
Also - any plans to modernize your forums? They seem pretty dated frankly from a tech standpoint. Thanks for answering if you get the time - I know it's already been an hour.
I do not have any media training but I do my best to be as transparent, eloquent and sincere in interviews. I hope to improve over time. Both Lucien and I are spokespeople and we are both members of the Executive Ministry. I'm not in charge of our forums, but I'm sure if we had the resources to update, we would.
On a regular basis I see other religious groups set up at train stations or other public locations to pass out literature and to witness. Does your Ministry actively set up anywhere public in order to recruit or spread your word?
We have set up information booths in public locations. However, we do not proselytize or actively recruit.
Do you ever get annoyed by people asking questions about satanism that a 2 minute google search would answer?
EDIT: Also, if religion were to change, like if people started treating Harry Potter like they do Christians today, would you change your organization to be "voldemortists"?
YES. and no - Our organization was not founded to oppose Christianity. We have affirmative beliefs as Satanists.
What is next for you and the promotion of TST? It is good to have eloquent speakers to whom others will listen to, and have reasonable discussions with, and you have mentioned many times an interest in having such discussions. Any such plans or similar promotions to the grand Baphomet Unveiling that gave, imho, a great positive view on Satanists?
In Detroit we are working on several local campaigns in regards to reproductive rights - a topic that is dominated by the religious opinions of legislators. We also hope to host a public conversation regarding the nature of religion and history of Satanism.
Some say satanists are just our for attention.
What would you say to those people?