Monday, March 28, 2016

Atheists Take On Creationist Theme Park In Kentucky

Out there in Kentucky … because, where else? … a Noah’s Ark theme park, Ark Encounter, created by a group called Answers in Genesis, is set to open this July. The centerpiece of the park, like Disney’s Cinderella’s castle or Epcot’s globe, is a 510-foot replica of Noah’s Ark.

Um, okay … but, since the group behind Ark Encounter has initiated a discriminatory hiring practice, which is a polite way of saying, No Gays, No Atheists, No One But Christians, another group, the Tri-State Freethinkers, has erected a billboard saying Ark Encounter “celebrates the destruction of humankind, minus whoever was on the ark" and calls the site a “genocide and incest park” that “[celebrates] 2000 years of myths."

Ark Encounter documents state that “employees must oppose abortion, euthanasia, gay rights, and trans rights” in addition to, well, here’s Ark Encounter’s statement of faith:
"The only legitimate marriage sanctioned by God is the joining of one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union, as delineated in Scripture. God intends sexual intimacy to only occur between a man and a woman who are married to each other, and has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman. Any form of sexual immorality, such as adultery, fornication, homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, pornography, or any attempt to change one’s gender, or disagreement with one’s biological gender, is sinful and offensive to God."
Answers in Genesis is also responsible for the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Kentucky, where visitors learn that the earth is 6,000 years old and that humans and dinosaurs once lived side-by-side in peace and harmony … Wait. The Flintstones is real?

The Creation Museum has also come under fire for antigay discrimination because they also require employees to sign a pledge that “makes applicants promise to follow… orthodox Christian beliefs, including opposing same-sex marriage and believing all answers exist in the Bible.”

And if you’re gay, stay away from Creation Museum lest you spontaneously combust. Back in 2011 the museum turned away two men who had purchased tickets to its annual Date Night because, Creation Museum representatives say, the couple’s presence would “add an un-Christian element to the event.” Trouble was, the two men were neither gay, nor a couple, just two fellas who didn’t have dates for the Creation Museum event.

And this whole mess begins with the man behind Answers in Genesis: Ken Ham. He hates The Gays; in 2015, Ham argued that following the Supreme Court’s ruling on marriage equality, the United States is “under judgment from God”;
“One of the signs of even God judging a nation and withdrawing the restraining influence of the Holy Spirit, one of the signs is the sign of homosexual behavior, as it says in Romans 1, and I believe we’re seeing that in this nation, I believe this nation is under judgment.”
Ham also believes that the definition of marriage as between a man and a woman is so fundamental to society that if we give up that principle, people may as well go naked:
“If you abandon Genesis’ literal history of marriage and say marriage can be two men or two women or whatever you want, well, why not abandon clothing?”
Well, that could be fun? But let’s get serious for a moment. Ken Ham, and his people, and his theme parks and museums, can believe and promote whatever they want, but they are asking taxpayers, all taxpayers, to pay for their arks and myths.

In 2014, Answers in Genesis applied for, and received, $18 million in tax breaks from the Kentucky Tourism Development Finance Authority to build Ark Encounters; that funding was briefly revoked by the governor after news broke of the park’s discriminatory hiring practices which made them ineligible for tax breaks.

But, Answers in Genesis appealed the board’s decision through a federal lawsuit, arguing that Ark Encounters’ tax exemptions were denied based on the theme park’s “religious purpose and message” and U.S. District Judge Gregory Van Tatenhove agreed, writing that the attraction is “neutral, has a secular purpose, and does not grant preferential treatment to anyone based on religion.”

You know, except for not hiring gays and denying entrance to events to anyone who might be perceived as gay. And so that’s why Tri-State Freethinkers Crowdsourced $7,200 to campaign against Ark Encounters and if they reach the $10,000 mark — their next milestone — they’ll buy “four billboards at the same time or up to 10 locations spread out over the summer.”

And, this may be a stretch, if they raise $150 million they’ll build their own theme park … maybe right next door to the Ark.


Chris said...

First off, Adam had two wives according to old old old manuscripts by the name of Lilith who was a sex fiend and demand equality with Adam (which didn't sit well). Second, Eve was not a good seamstress as the leaves she sewed together to cover ...their nakedness.... had to be replace with fur garments by God so they wouldn't freeze when they left the Garden. And it all goes down hill from there.

anne marie in philly said...

NO TAX MONEY for religion; separation of church & state. if these freaks want a theme park, let them build it with their OWN MONEY.

Sadie J said...

How can they even find enough employees to operate the business with suck restrictions, and then how can they find enough people to actually pay to come in on a consistent basis to pay said employees? Somehow, I don't see this as a lucrative business plan.

the dogs' mother said...

For a while there I did craft shows and we all bought from each other (probably a good portion of our sales...) anyway I had a couple friends who did Noah's Arks so I collected a bunch of them. Me, a Unitarian!, and I still have not gotten zotted by God!

Helen Lashbrook said...

Is that a limp penis on the second advert or is it my over-active imagination?

How can a company dedicated to encountering whatever went on in the Ark be a secular company? Clearly the judge has a very different dictionary from mine.