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Satanic Temple statue among displays at Illinois Capitol

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — A local chapter of the Satanic Temple has been allowed to place a statue in the Illinois Statehouse alongside holiday displays of a Nativity scene and a menorah.

The State Journal-Register reports the sculpture depicts the forearm of a woman holding an apple. The statue is called “Knowledge is the Greatest Gift.”

In its application for the display, Satanic Temple-Chicago calls itself a nontheistic organization that aims to “encourage benevolence and empathy among all people.”

Secretary of State Spokesman Dave Druker says the group has the same rights as other religious organizations to have a display in the rotunda.

Druker says the state can’t censor the contents of the display if they’re not funded by taxpayer dollars because the Capitol rotunda is a public place.