There are two versions of the nativity scene on display at the Michigan capitol.
The Detroit Chapter of the Satanic Temple has set up its “Snaketivity Scene” featuring ” a snake offering a book called Revolt of the Angels as a symbolic gift….The snake is wrapped around the Satanic cross on the 3-feet-by-3-feet display.”
The temple’s spokesman Jex Blackmore said the group does not worship Satan, but “promotes individuality, compassion and views outside Christian and many conservative beliefs.”
“I think that this holiday season is a time of year that is celebrated in many different ways. Having our government endorse one singular viewpoint or method of celebrating the season is problematic when we have a diverse community of people in Michigan,” said Blackmore, who wore an upside-down Christian cross necklace. “We wanted to add to that conversation by having our representation of how we may celebrate this time of year.”
Shortly after the “Snaketivity Scene” went up, Sen. Rick Jones (R-Grand Ledge) put up a Christian nativity scene on the other side of the capitol.
He personally plans to remove and replace his nativity display daily, as required under state rules for all outdoor displays at the Capitol. He said the Satanist group mounted their display to be “offensive.”
“They could have put theirs up in July or April or sometime. They didn’t need to put it up in the Christmas season,” Jones said. “That’s OK. We’re going to ignore them. I’m not afraid of the snake people. I’m sure that Jesus Christ is not afraid.”
The Satanic Temple display is permitted to be displayed until Friday.