Pentagram placed by nativity scene causes controversy in Boca Raton

City's interfaith community condemns symbol

By Amy Viteri - Investigative Reporter

BOCA RATON, Fla. - They call it the most wonderful time of the year, and for many it is also the most religious.

In Boca Raton, people who gathered Wednesday night to admire the nativity scene in Sanborn Square also saw a large pentagram weighing several hundred pounds. 

The man responsible for the pentagram said he works for the national Freedom From Religion Foundation and said in a statement, "All hail Satan! ... Love trumps hate. The first amendment must be protected, including the freedom to offend."

The pentagram's presence caused a clash of public opinion.

"I think it's ridiculous," Jerry Yeager said. "This is Boca Raton and we put up with something like this?"

One woman at Sanborn Square confronted the man who proudly displayed the pentagram.

"This, to me, can be art, but it's not in the right setting," she told him.

Lauren Esquivel supports the sign.

"We're in full support of freedom of all religions, so we just thought we would come out and show a little support," she said.

The display, which someone partially painted over, prompted a response from Boca Raton's interfaith community, who placed a sign of their own in the area.

The Interfaith sign reads: "The interfaith religious community honors our constitutional rights of freedom of speech and worship. We are blessed to live in a country that cherishes and protects these rights. The use of satanic symbols is offensive and harmful to our community’s  well-being. We find it a shameful and hypocritical way to advocate for freedom of religion. We stand united for the life-giving values of justice, mercy and peace at the heart of our religious traditions."

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