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Christian Military Veteran Beheads Satanic Statue in State Capitol: 'My Conscience Is Held Captive to the Word of God'

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A former Navy pilot says he broke the laws of Iowa on Thursday to obey the laws of God.

Michael Cassidy vandalized a display put up in the Iowa state Capitol by the Satanic Temple, according to The Sentinel. The display featured a ram’s head on a caped mannequin.

Cassidy took off the ram’s head, tossed it in a trash can, and knocked the statue over. He faces a fourth-degree criminal mischief charge.

“I saw this blasphemous statue and was outraged,” Cassidy told The Sentinel. “My conscience is held captive to the word of God, not to bureaucratic decree. And so I acted.”

His words recall those of Martin Luther in his defense at the Diet of Worms in 1521, when he said, “My conscience is taken captive by God’s word.”

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Cassidy said his goal was to “awaken Christians to the anti-Christian acts promoted by our government.”

“Anti-Christian values have steadily been mainstreamed more and more in recent decades, and Christians have largely acted like the proverbial frog in the boiling pot of water,” he said.

Cassidy also argued that the display was not legitimate free speech.

Was Cassidy right to destroy this statue?

“The world may tell Christians to submissively accept the legitimization of Satan, but none of the founders would have considered government sanction of Satanic altars inside Capitol buildings as protected by the First Amendment,” he said.

Cassidy’s attorney, Davis Younts, said his client was “motivated by his faith to peacefully protest a display that is a direct affront to God.”

“It is my hope that the citation will be dismissed when my client’s actions are understood and that he will not face prosecution because of his faith,” he said.

The display, which was erected with permission earlier this month, drew furor.

Republican state Rep. Brad Sherman called for it to be removed.

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“It is a tortured and twisted interpretation of law that affords Satan, who is universally understood to be the enemy of God, religious expression equal to God in an institution of government that depends upon God for continued blessings,” he wrote in a newsletter.

“Such a legal view not only violates the very foundation of our State Constitution, but it offends the God upon whom we depend and undermines our wellbeing.”

Republican state Rep. Jon Dunwell thought the display should remain, noting the contradiction between faith and free speech.

“As a follower of Christ, I certainly find a display from the Satanic Temple objectionable. It stands in direct opposition to my faith and would be classified as evil,” he posted last week on X.

“As an Iowan and a State Representative, I don’t want the state evaluating and making determinations about religions. I am guided by the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.”

In a Tuesday statement, Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds called the display “absolutely objectionable” but said that “in a free society, the best response to objectionable speech is more speech.”

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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