Reactionary, self-appointed agents of God joined forces with sensation-starved media to shout a Satanic Black Mass reenactment off Harvard University campus last night.
For Christians who feel their religious freedoms infringed upon whenever anyone chants “Abracadabra” or what-have-you while wearing a black or red robe, truly, this was a glorious turn of events. For curious metal heads and counter culture habitués who came to check out the hullaballoo, reactions to the cancellation ranged from dull-surprise to indignation.
“I am horribly disappointed. This was my opportunity to really get into the insides of the underworld. I was expecting to see the fundamental machinations that gave us people like Cheney and Bush,” said the dapperly-attired Bil Lewis of Cambridge, upon observing a cabal of beaming non-secular protesters gathered nearby the Cambridge Queen’s Head, but not the once-scheduled Satanic display.
I can’t help but feel a little bad for the Harvard Extension Cultural Studies Club. Nobody planning an event they expect to garner national news exposure and a deluge of hate mail books a 100-seat venue. In fact, the student group should be commended for fruitlessly attempting to relocate the faux-ritual to the Middle East before throwing their hands up. As for their co-organizers among The Satanic Temple, they stuck to their guns and performed their rites at the Hong Kong and caused so little commotion that the owner had no idea the ceremony had taken place at all.
Meanwhile, back at Harvard, a light smattering of disappointed Satanic-sympathizers clashed with what few Christians lingered to bask in triumph and one super-condescending Christian podcaster who kept incorrectly stating that the Satanic Temple had chickened out.
“Where’s your tolerance?” a Jesus-fearing man with no self-awareness shouted at Brendan O’Hare, who fronts a local thrash metal outfit coincidentally called Black Mass.
“Fuck you! Have I ever once come to one of your masses and told you couldn’t carry it out?”
“This isn’t even a legitimate Satanic practice,” explained O’Hare, of Medford, who stressed that he does not consider himself a Satanist. “You wanna see true demon worship? You look to very small, very elitist cults. What I’m sure most of these Christians don’t understand is tonight, there was only going to be a practice of the Black Mass as written by Anton LaVey – an atheist. If they planned a legitimate form of demonic ritual worship, we would not know about it.”
“I’m pissed that we’re not as pissed as we should be,” said Heather, an apparent punk rocker and future Harvard graduate student, who traveled two hours for the nixed reenactment. “I want to feel represented here at Harvard University. They don’t have an all-inclusive caucus for Satanists and other weirdoes at Harvard. I don’t feel represented, and I’m not being facetious, I’m very pissed off. We figured this was something we’d never get a chance to do ever again.”
Well, maybe she will get to see an reenacted Black Mass someday. But unless the “academia is conspiring to undermine our monopoly on morality” narrative moves from the religious right’s imagination and into the real world at some point, it’s not going to be at Harvard.