The Satanic Temple of Indiana is cleaning up a highway and local residents are angry

I’ve lived in Indiana my entire life. The land of MAGA bumper stickers, Mike Pence, meth labs, and completely preventable HIV outbreaks. It’s a truly magical place.

And for a short period of time, we also had a state law that allowed businesses to discriminate against people who were gay or transgender under the guise of religion. How Christian of them.

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But, thank god for the Satanists here in Indiana. That’s because the Indiana chapter of The Satanic Temple decided to clean up a stretch of highway outside the Indianapolis suburb of Zionsville as part of their “Inverted Crossroads” campaign. I’m almost mad at how great the name of their project is (Indiana’s state motto is “Crossroads of America”).

The group was accepted into Indiana’s “Adopt a highway” program two months ago, and has already completed two cleanups of their stretch of the road. They’re making the two mile stretch of road cleaner by picking up trash that would otherwise just sit there.

So, of course, the local residents are angry about it.

That’s not enough to win over Jill Konija, whose property line is just a few feet from one of the signs. 

“We’re obviously believers in God,” Konija said. “It’s like advertising a Satanic church in front of our home.”

Obviously believers in god. Obviously.

Mary Rosswurm, who lives across the street, said she’s concerned about the sign affecting her property value. 

“There could maybe only be one other sign that’s worse that that to have up from your house,” Rosswurm said. “Which would be the KKK (Ku Klux Klan).”

Well, that’s pretty loaded. Imagine thinking that a group of people volunteering to clean up a highway was comparable to white supremacists.

For those who aren’t aware, members of the Satanic Temple don’t worship Satan. And, if there was any confusion, the leader of the Indiana chapter, Damien Blackmoor, clarified their position on infantcide by saying:

“We’re not out here sacrificing babies.”

But surprisingly, the state of Indiana isn’t flinching about the issue. A spokesperson for INDOT said that they respect the Satanic Temple’s freedom of speech, and there aren’t restrictions on what types of groups can adopt a highway.

And there shouldn’t be, as I’ve seen many “Adopt a Highway” signs in Indiana that feature Christian churches.

But at least it’s not all doom and gloom for the residents in Zionsville, as a neighbor to Jilly Konja said:

“My reaction was if they wanna clean the highway, they’re more than welcome to,” Kolmerton said. “It doesn’t matter to me who’s doing it one way or the other.” 

And that’s the point.


Written by Dan Broadbent

Science Enthusiast. Atheist. Lover of cats.

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