One of the most annoying traits of evangelical and fundamentalist Christians is the immediate condemnation of other religions. Anything unfamiliar to them automatically becomes evil.
So it is with Glenn Beck. Speaking on his Monday show, Beck told his viewers about a protest in Michigan over the weekend. The anti-Planned Parenthood folks waved signs and chanted prayers outside the Ferndale PP clinic as part of a national day of protest. They were met with a counter-protest which included members of The Satanic Temple of Detroit. The Temple’s protest involved the pouring of milk over bound female members by their male counterparts, who were dressed as priests.
The Satanic Temple recorded the event:
The Satanic Temple did not explain why they poured milk over bound women or why the men were in priestly attire. So Glenn Beck made something up:
“I’ll bet you there is an ancient Moloch ritual that includes using milk like that. I’ll bet you that has significance … I’ll bet you there is an ancient ritualistic evil reason they used milk.”
Beck then called up his buddy Rabbi Daniel Lapin to chat about the theory. Lapin told Beck that he was correct, then went off on a rant about many topics. When he got back around the topic at hand, he noted that milk is a human’s first form of sustenance and that the use of it by the Satanic Temple was “brilliantly perverse.” Because babies, as we know, live on milk and the Temple wants Planned Parenthood to keep killing and dismembering… (wait for it)… babies!
The Satanic Temple of Detroit posted this message on their Facebook page in explanation of their protest:
“The Satanic Temple strongly opposes the promotion of misinformation and believes that all people are entitled to make informed decisions about their health, family and future without coercion. We will not remain voiceless when the philosophical and religious opinions of those in power are utilized to legislate morality. The attempt to do so violates American foundational values of freedom and liberty.”
Nothing nefarious about that. Unless you’re Glenn Beck and Daniel Lapin. They want to be able to legislate morality. Freedom, to them, is the freedom to impose their beliefs on the rest of us. And to make laws according to those beliefs.
Why milk? Milk as a symbol goes back to ancient times. The milk given by an earthly mother became a gift from many incarnations of the Goddess. One of the widest known was Hathor, the Egyptian cow-goddess. Hathor’s milk gave new life to the dead Pharoah in the Otherworld. Milk was an offering to deities, especially to Her. The cow-goddess Aditi was one of the earliest deities of the Hindus and milk is seen in India as a life-giving offering; a symbol of purity and of fertility.
Perhaps there was no religious symbolism intended at all. Maybe the Temple are just are using the association of milk with motherhood and the bound women being forced to endure it. The sign being held by another member during the protest gives us a clue:
“America is not a theocracy. End forced motherhood!”
This was political theater, nothing more. To Glenn Beck and Daniel Lapin — indeed, to anyone who mindlessly condemns other religions — anything that is foreign to them is evil. It is a childish response. Exactly what one would expect from Glenn Beck.
Here’s the video via Right Wing Watch:
Photo Credit: Screen Capture of The Satanic Temple Detroit’s video