The federal government’s push to give followers of religion the right to discriminate based on their beliefs is “about to open the gates of hell”, according to a group of Satanists and others “condemned to the underworld”, who will be protesting against the draft Religious Discrimination Bill on Saturday.
The activists, on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, are calling on “witches, sodomites, warlocks, pagans, Satanists, atheists and whores” to join them for the parade along Noosa’s Hastings Street, where they will send a message to the Morrison Government.
Organisers say the ‘Halloween on Hastings’ event on Saturday night will give alternative religious and spiritual practitioners the opportunity to express their beliefs in public, and make a political statement against the Morrison Government’s Religious Discrimination Bill.
Organiser Robin Bristow—the secretary of Noosa’s annual LGBTQI celebration, the Rainbow River Festival—said that if the Religious Discrimination Bill is passed, it would “open the gates to hell” because Satanists would also want to exercise their rights under the bill.
“The Satanists I have spoken to are looking forward to the new bill and the rights it will confer on them – especially when it comes to evangelising and, perhaps, most importantly establishing satanic chaplains in state schools,” said Bristow.
Bristow said he would like to see Satanists given the same opportunity as Christian groups to receive funding under the federal government’s controversial national school chaplaincy program, and to conduct religious instruction classes on a weekly basis in public schools.
“If the government is going to push new ‘religious freedom’ laws through parliament, Satanists will be ready and waiting to demand equal treatment under the law, just like any other religious group,” he said.
Bristow said he had organised the street parade after the Noosa Shire Council had rejected his application to set up a ‘hydration station’ at night-time on Hastings Street, where Christian groups that preach against homosexuality have been given council approval to evangelise.
The parade will commence at 8pm this Saturday, 2 November outside the Noosa Heads Police Beat, at 48 Hastings Street, Noosa Heads.
“Get frocked up in your best devilish drag and join us for a night of fun,” urged Bristow.
“We especially welcome zombies. The event will end with an orgy of drinking and dancing at a nearby nightclub.”