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Satanic Temple of Texas sues state over new abortion restrictions

Republican Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed a new ban on abortion into law on Wednesday. While some Texans call the law a milestone in pro-life legislation, others say it’s too extreme. The law, originally proposed by state senator Bryan Hughes, bans abortions at six weeks pregnant, making it one of many “heartbeat laws” introduced in recent years, and it will go into effective September 1.

Those who oppose the passage of the law have already begun taking steps to sue the state and challenge the bill in court. This includes the state’s own satanic temple. The Temple has filed a lawsuit against the state, claiming that the new abortion restrictions violate the religious beliefs of its members.

On behalf of TST member ‘Ann Doe’, TST is suing the state of Texas for imposing medically unnecessary abortion regulations, including an ultrasound, forced decision to reject ‘opportunity’ to see results of the ultrasound, forced listening to an account of the ultrasound results and a mandatory waiting period between the ultrasound and the abortion.

Going through The satanic temple

Ann Doe performed the Temple Abortion Ritual, which is a ceremonial affirmation of bodily autonomy and self-esteem that incorporates the abortion process. Prior to filing the lawsuit, Temple’s attorney sent a letter to the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, requesting an exemption on Ann Doe’s behalf:

“The abortion ritual (1) necessitates an abortion; and (2) affirms her religious adherence to the third and fifth tenets of TST. demanded that she have an ultrasound… [ These ] requirements significantly interfere with Ms. Doe’s religious beliefs and practices for two reasons. First, the requirements are a prerequisite for Ms. Doe’s ability to participate in a religious ceremony. It is substantial interference in itself for the state to put a regulatory hurdle — one that costs money — ahead of a religious exercise. The state might as well tax and regulate the mass.”

Going through The satanic temple

The Temple website describes their case in brief and even asks for a donation (if you’re so inclined). If not, there’s nothing stopping you from calling, texting, emailing or just plain old snail mail to Mr Abbott.