Such a long response, I have to do this by the numbers...
(1) I have played D&D twice, over 12 years ago. I can't stand video game RPGs. The closest I'll come to one is Zelda. So I wouldn't say I was blinded my love of RPGs.
(2) Dark? How? Pagan simply means you aren't a Buddhist, Christian, Muslim, Jew or Hindu? OK, fine, we can also exclude Ba'hai and Shinto. I've never met a Pagan who said 'let's worship Satan!'
(3) Your information is nearly as old as me (3 decades). System of a Down and Deer Hunter and Mastadon don't sing about Satan. Hell, no one's even called it "heavy" since like '91! It's just METAL. You may hear some devilish stuff out of Dethklok but the fans understand that it's satire (Murderface Murderface Murderface!) Leaving aside how dated and no longer relevant this information is, your approach can be applied to video games. Tell me how feasible you actually think this is: I played Super Mario Brothers in the arcade when I was 8 years old. That Christmas, I got an NES. Someone recommended I try Legend of Zelda. There was minimal use of magic in Zelda, the theology of which was polythiest. Ergo, Mario Brothers led me down the path to polythiestic witchcraft!
(4)Let's be honest, and this is where we're going to reach an unresolvable conclusion, to a Christian, snakes talk. A guy lived in a fish for 3 days. But I really think that what you stated here isn't even the Christianity of Jesus' and Paul's time. Jehovah said "have no other Gods BEFORE me." You and your ilk say things that are far more Bush-like: "If you're not with us, you're with the terrorists." This mode of thinking leaves you very vulnerable to charlatanry. I'll tell you like my favorite televangelist, Bill Maher, tells it: "I'm selling doubt."
(5) Because it's the truth? Because no one on Earth ACTUALLY worships Satan?
(6) This sort of thing doesn't happen. NO religion, least of all that non-religion Satanism, recruits through D&D or geek culture. Krishnas hand out literature at airports. Christians take to the airwaves. No one recruits through roleplaying games, or ever did during the paranoid 70's and 80's.
(7) I can only presume that this conflict you're describing is some form of "spiritual warfare." So, from a rationalist to a mystic, we'll just have to agree to disagree.
Real quick, I'd like to point out some of the other things that these fundamentalist D&D detractors had to say during the 80's.
Cabbage Patch Kids' middle names came from the monikers of demons from Hell.
Star Trek is a vessel for promoting witchery.
He-Man and She-Ra promotes the worship of demons and devils.
Homosexuals have brought the plague of AIDS to America, where it will spread to the heterosexual population as God's divine wrath for us tolerating and accepting them.
Understand, I don't believe that any faith, any belief, is worth holding onto if it can't stand up to a little internal doubt.
Since Therumancer is not defending himself I feel I must.
Understand that I am speaking from a "fundamentalist" Christian background, however, in addition to being a gamer, I believe that anything that one considers true must be able to stand up to any debate, otherwise it is not true, so feel free to disagree. Also understand that this debate is all about societies perception of DnD and geek culture as a whole. Anyway, on with the rebuttal
1) Irrelevant, he was referring to geek culture as a whole. One simply needs to examine the recent attacks on gaming to see that we tend to get reeeaally enthusiastic about "fighting back" at the slightest provocation. This applies not only to video games of today and DnD of the eighties, but even back to the comics in the fifties-sixties. Therumancer was simply using your post as an example.
2) I'd also like to know what Therumancer was referring to as far as "dark" is concerned, but I shall assume that he means "extreme" in their practices, whether that is "dark" or not is up to you to decide. However, the point is valid. I have personally met multiple people who self-identify as "pagan" regardless of the original intent of the word. It seems to be mostly popular with individuals who, like yourself, are fed up with organized religion. Whether they are "earth-worshippers" or "druids" or whatever their moniker of choice is, they mostly tend towards a certain type of behavior. So I'm going to assume here that Theru was defining what he meant by pagans.
3) I am pretty sick of this argument. It's been resolved. Speaking as a metal-head myself, metal does not lead you down the path to Satan, however, many so-called "hardcore" metal-heads tend to adopt stereotypical "Satanist" imagery. This debate is probably older than I am and I don't think we are going to reach a conclusion on a forum that doesn't have much to do with it. Theru was just saying that to the straw-man "parents" that we seem to be debating here that "Heavy Metal" culture appears to be satanic in nature. Whether or not it is is irrelevant.
4) This is a very common type of misconception about Christianity. Therumancer was correct in his statement that there are two "forces" in Christian view. However, Jesus taught that this doesn't mean we should hold a "witch-hunt" for anything that didn't line up with our view of "God-sent" material as there is very little that is "God-sent," but that we should be shining lights of a better way even where "witch-hunters" feared "corruption." Many so-called "Moral guardians" simply use Christian justifications for their own ends (your Bush example here is flawed in it's terrorist focus, but fundamentally correct, politicians have been doing this since Christianity began to gain dominance in the western world.) As for your assertion that "this is where we're going to reach an unresolvable conclusion," Christianity is a remarkably easy religion to debate (note, religion. supernatural stuff happens in religion, it comes with the territory) as it only has one unchanging canon. This means that both sides have the same rulebook to work from as long as neither side pulls an "interpretation" card. Which is unfortunately what leads to "moral-guardian" type behavior.
5) I have honestly no idea what you are saying here. Sure, there are some people out there who genuinely believe that they are worshiping Satan, but I'm not sure how that applies to Theru's statement that the perceived "satanic imagery" that the movies where attacking where elements from other parts of geek-culture (a statement that may not be entirely true anyway, the SCA does not equal "satanic imagery")
6) Theru was not saying that his "new-agers" were recruiting through DnD. Simply that a parent stops by a group and witnesses this "new-ager" doing what "new-agers" do and flips out. Sure that was an extreme example, but again understand that this is all perception. Whether or not something is a pot of herbal tea or a cauldron of brew is a distinction that the parent will not stop to make if he sees the person brewing it as a "bad person."
7) The conflict that Theru was describing was the one that consisted of "gamers vs. moral guardians" not the spiritual one that you presumed. Theru's point was that when you are in a dispute, you shouldn't build a mouth-breathing straw-man out of the opposing side simply because they don't agree with you. This is something that most of us are guilty of when defending our hobby.
8) This list is the attitude I was describing above. This whole list-building thing is something that we geeks love to use to show that it's "us against them." I can't respond to any one of these things without involving myself in a long debate (as if this was wasn't) so the list goes unchallenged. It doesn't matter if any one of those is made up, just that they where in a list of stuff that we accept as "fact." Thus it's true by association. There's a certain other group of people that love to use this logical fallacy, your beloved straw-men.
Holy cow, that's a long post. Sorry if I co-opted the arguably dead thread, but I couldn't let that go unchallenged. Also, if I incorrectly presumed something either of you said (I did a LOT of presuming) feel free to clear that up. It's quite possible that funguy was simply trolling but I can't stand when people just rant back at a valid post with stereotypical arguments. Even on a topic that should have been dead 15 years ago.