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The Satanic Panic was a moral panic that swept across the United States in the 1980s, fueled by widespread fears of widespread Satanic ritual abuse (SRA). These fears, despite being largely unsubstantiated, led to thousands of accusations, primarily focused on daycare centers and preschools, of Satanic cults engaging in child abuse and human sacrifice.

Here are some key points about the Satanic Panic:

  • Unfounded claims: The vast majority of the accusations (estimated at over 12,000) were never substantiated, and investigations often revealed no evidence of SRA.
  • Questionable interrogation techniques: Many of the accusations stemmed from suggestive and coercive questioning of children by authorities, who often lacked proper training in child psychology and inadvertently implanted false memories in vulnerable young minds.
  • Long-lasting impact: The Satanic Panic had a significant impact on American society, leading to the wrongful imprisonment of innocent individuals, the destruction of families, and the erosion of public trust in institutions like daycare centers.

It’s important to remember that the Satanic Panic is widely considered a period of mass hysteria fueled by misinformation and fear-mongering. While some individuals who identify as Satanists do exist, the widespread claims of Satanic cults engaging in widespread child abuse have been thoroughly debunked.