Satanic panic is alive and well. The crafty and the naive alike exploit it to achieve their own ends - whether that's putting the fear of God in people, prosecuting an alleged criminal, or just selling lots of DVDs. Just one recent example:
- In a recent interview with David Icke, conspiranoid radio host Alex Jones gave several examples of what he considers Satanic sacrifice and deviant sexuality. "We know that Satanists sacrifice people. They get caught doing it all the time."
He declared that France's Minister of Culture, Frederic Mitterand, bragged in a book that he "goes to slave camps and rapes little boys". Mitterand even refers to this practice as a "ritual".
This is pure bullshit. The book Jones refers to (though he clearly hasn't read it) is Mitterand's 2005 autobiographical novel, The Bad Life, in which he describes visiting young male prostitutes (young men, not children) in Thailand. No "slave camps". No "rape". No "little boys". However, Mitterand did push the envelope by describing his reaction the sex trade in Bangkok thusly: "All these rituals of the market for youths, the slave market, excite me enormously". Icke stated, "Roman Polanski is a practicing Satanist." He said Sharon Tate's murder was directly connected to Satanism. This is pure bullshit. The Manson Family murders had nothing to do with Satanism, and making a film about devil worshippers does not make you a Satanist. Period.
He went on to explain one of his central conspiracy theories, that the elite routinely rape and sacrifice prepubescent children to obtain their energy (and blood, since they are blood-drinking, shapeshifting Reptiles from another dimension).
Jones listed the cultures that have practiced ritual human sacrifice: Mesoamericans, Africans, Aztecs, Asians, Babylonians, Romans, Greeks, Middle Eastern tribes. All had high priests who worshipped the same snake god and followed the same "secret mathematics religion", and all sacrificed healthy people of all ages and both sexes. Most tortured their victims. Most used hallucinogens (as does Icke himself, but Icke stayed mum at this point in the broadcast). Note, please, that Jones didn't mention Celtic or Nordic sacrifice.
Again, pure bullshit. There is no "secret mathematics religion", and the cultures mentioned had an array of gods (not just a single "snake god", though a few did incorporate snakes or serpents into their cosmology and/or mythology at one time or another - as does Christianity, which Jones favors, and the chemognostic New Age "shamanism" that Icke appreciates).
Jones went on to say that Tony Blair likes to be possessed by the spirit of "white light", and that homosexual orgies take place during Skull & Bones initiation ceremonies. Blair is Catholic now, so his alleged ecstatic states have nothing to do with Satanism. And while I'm sure college secret societies have some homoerotic aspects, no one has ever reported gay orgies (or orgies of any kind) at S&B.