Tucker Carlson had a very interesting guest: Satanic Temple co-founder Lucien Greaves, who appeared Thursday night on Fox News' "Tucker Carlson Tonight" to dispel the speculation that a satanic monument was erected in a local Minnesota park in order to stir up Christians.
The satanic monument, had it been erected, would have been the first of its kind installed on public property in U.S. history.
The monument, which aimed to "honor" U.S. veterans, was designed for placement in Veterans Memorial Park in Belle Plaine, Minnesota, and would have been placed in the "free-speech zone" of the park.
Belle Plaine City Council member Cary Coop told local station WCCO-TV that he didn't think "there’s too many Satanists around here, but it’s free speech." But despite the open-mindedness that the monument received even from those who didn't support the fundamental belief behind it, the monument proposal was struck down.
The Belle Plaine City Council on Monday night voted to do away with the park's "free-speech zone," effectively shutting down the placement of the monument.
A statement from the city about removing the "free-speech zone" of the Veterans park read:
"The debate between those communities has drawn significant regional and national attention to our city, and has promoted divisiveness among our own residents. While this debate has a place in public dialogue, it has detracted from our city’s original intent of designating a space solely for the purpose of honoring and memorializing military veterans, and has also portrayed our city in a negative light.”
City council noted that all owners of any privately owned displays or memorials in the park have been given 10 days to remove them from the property.
Carlson, however, went head to head with Greaves over free speech Thursday night on his conservative show.
"I think that people should have the right to speak," Carlson told Greaves, "but also they should have to answer questions, and the right to speak and the right to sort of give the finger to the residents of this little town in Minnesota is not exactly ... the same thing."
Greaves fired back, "That is not what we were doing ... if you look at the monument, it's very respectful, it's irreverent, very sober. A simple monument, really. [It's a monument] for veterans."
He continued, "This was first, and foremost, something to honor veterans, veterans who have fought and served; all veterans. Not all veterans are Christian, not all veterans are Satanists, but they did fight for pluralism and they did fight for free speech. And to that end, it's nice to know that we can preserve those values."
"When they shut down the open forum," Greaves continued, to a very puzzled-looking Carlson, "we weren't actually celebrating that. We built this monument. We were ready to install it, we wanted to put it there, [and] it seemed like the residents of Belle Plaine weren't entirely up in arms about this ... the protesters, from a Catholic organization — they were also out of state."
Carlson, who could apparently listen to no more, interrupted Greaves and said, "Try it in downtown Birmingham, Alabama or Chicago or something, but ... Look, here's the point I'm making: there's no comparison between Satanism — which is like a silly, made-up religion which has no God — Christianity or Judaism or Islam ... they're millennia old, they run hospitals, churches, schools; they form the basis of our civil society. They don't really compare to what you're doing. Do they?"
During Carlson's monologue, Greaves continually rolled his eyes at the comparisons between Satanism and traditional religions.
Answering Carlson's question, Greaves said, "Well, we're getting there. We're a very growing population and we should defend pluralism and free speech. We can't allow America to divide itself into regional theocracies."
See part of the exchange in the video below.
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