Spirituality Magazine

The Curious Hand Sign at Lady Bird Johnson’s Funeral

By Eowyn @DrEowyn

In an email, FOTM reader MariaS drew my attention to a curious phenomenon during the 2007 funeral for Lady Bird Johnson, the wife of former President Lyndon B. Johnson, wherein the mourners all made the sign of the horns.

The sign of the horns, more sinisterly called the Devil’s horns is formed by extending the index and little fingers while holding the middle and ring fingers down with the thumb.

devil's horns

We are told that it is a hand gesture with a variety of meanings and uses in various cultures. In Italy, it means “malocchio” — to ward off the evil eye or ill fortune. In America, the sign of horns is popular in heavy metal subcultures.

But the sign of horns also has another meaning: Devil’s Horns, signifying one’s allegiance to Satan. It was popularized in the late 1960s by the founder of the Church of Satan Anton LaVey (see pic below) and later was passed on to the masses by rock musicians who were into Satanism. They displayed the sign on the stage and the crowd mimicked them without knowing what it actually means.

Anton LaVey

Richard Ramirez, the notorious serial killer whom the media dubbed “The Night Stalker,” is an avowed Satanist. During his trial in the late 1980s, he openly flashed the Devil’s Horns hand sign to signify his allegiance:


The sign of the horns has yet another meaning in America: it’s the “Hook ‘em Horns” slogan and hand signal of The University of Texas at Austin (UTA). Students and alumni of the university employ a greeting consisting of the phrase “Hook ‘em” or “Hook ‘em Horns” and also use the phrase as a parting good-bye or as the closing line in a letter or story. The gesture also represents the Texas Longhorns athletics programs, which include UTA’s extramural and intramural sports teams, taking their name from the Longhorn cattle that were an important part of the development of Texas, and are now the official “large animal” of the U.S. State of Texas.

This is what the Texas “Hook ‘em Horns” hand sign looks like:

Texas Hookemhorns

Good grief. The Texas Longhorn hand sign looks EXACTLY like the Devil’s horns:

Texas Hookemhorns

So when the mourners and even the (Episcopalian) priests (!) all made the sign of the horns at Lady Bird Johnson’s funeral, were they “merely” doing the Texas Longhorn “Hook ‘em Horns”?

They must know the hand sign also signifies the Devil’s horns. If I were a Texan, I would NEVER make that sign!

Even if the mourners made the hand sign to show their pride as Texans, why are they putting Texas before America? Isn’t it more appropriate for mourners at the funeral of a former First Lady to show their patriotism toward their country instead of toward their state?


You can see photographs of elites (musicians, actors, media, politics) making the sign of the horns, HERE. They must all be making the Texas Longhorn sign — even the non-Texans! [snark]


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