Court: Flying Spaghetti Monster Is Not a Religion
In a 16-page decision, the U.S. District Court of Nebraska ruled on April 12 that Pastafarianism is satire, not sacred, and that anyone who thinks it is a religion has made an error “of basic reading comprehension.”
(This comes as the Associated Press trumpeted the “First Pastafarian Wedding.”) This has affected the US military in the past, when atheists and critics of Christianity have demanded the FSM be included next to Jesus. When Travis AFB acquiesced in 2012, an EO complaint was lodged because the FSM was created to mock religion. The EO office ultimately claimed ignorance, saying no one in their office realized it was criticizing the faith of fellow Airmen.
Others critics of religious liberty have predicted the weakness of this position, with one group claiming to be a Satanic Temple. While they admit they don’t believe in Satan and their actual purpose is to oppose Christianity, the fact they’ve appropriated what others might consider a valid “religion” avoids, or at least deflects, accusations they are nothing more than a parody.