More Nonsense from Ken Ham


#1

“A new diorama is being created for the Ark Encounter, in Petersburg, Kentucky that is said to depict gladatorial combat between men and dinosaurs.” Apparently Jurassic Park is open.

Read the article by BioLogos contributor James Kidder (Jimpithecus):

More Nonsense from Ken Ham


Is Young Earth creationism a new Idea?
(Brad Kramer) #2

When I first saw this on Twitter a couple of days ago, I thought to myself, “if I was trying to make fun of the Ark Encounter, this is exactly what I would do.” The fact that the Ark Encounter itself is including this diorama, without a hint of self-awareness, is incredible.

Also, seriously…what’s with the dinosaur thing? Did it really have to be a dinosaur?


(Patrick ) #3

It is appalling that Ken Ham is allowed to spread such lies to children as historical truth under the guise of Christianity. He has middle eastern people and children with circa 4000 years ago culture and technology in an arena with guards looking to be slaughtered by fictitious giant humans (Nephilim) and meat eating dinosaurs ready to devour humans. He claims that this is a true historical depiction. FFRF has sent over 1500 letters to public school principals and superintendents warning them that a class trip to the Ark Encounter would be a constitutional violation opening up the school district to lawsuits. What have Christian groups done to refute and repudiate Ken Ham and Ark Encounter?


#4

Exactly! It’s just like the pre-show movie they have. You couldn’t do a better job of mocking them if you tried. It’s like making a parody of a supermarket tabloid.


#5

I think that plenty of Christians have denounced Ken Ham.


(Patrick ) #6

Really, I haven’t seen much. In fact I have seen more of the opposite where some Christians are claiming that it is their religion freedom to have their public elementary school do their annual class trip to Ark Encounter.


#7

Believe me, plenty of Christians are against Ken Ham. It would be against the law to take public school kids to the ark encounter. Besides, the Ark Encounter is b.s.


(Jay Johnson) #8

From what I’ve seen, a class trip to the Ark Encounter would not result in even a second trip, let alone an annual return. The kids would revolt. Boooring!

Ken Ham’s obsession with Christian theme parks will drain money from AiG and his other “ministries”. Good.


#9

I don’t deny what you are reporting. I’m just amazed—because I am living at present right in the middle of the Bible Belt, and I haven’t heard a single word of such. I know some local Christians who want to take their kids to the Ark Encounter next summer, but I’m not even sure that they would be at all comfortable with public school teachers telling their kids anything about such matters, let alone taking them there on a school trip! In my experience, the kinds of Christians that are that excited about AIG and the Ark Encounter are the same Christians who hate the public schools and who send their kids to Christian private schools. They are the same people who would be horrified if their public school had a “Bible as Literature” course because they would be offended at the idea of “leaving God out” and treating the Bible like it was merely a genre of literature in the English curriculum.

Of course, the American Bible Belt is a huge and diverse place. So, no doubt, your segment of the Bible Belt is different from mine. I’m just surprised because I read a LOT of Christian websites and forums and ministry newsletters and not once have I caught a whiff of that. I just heard of one Florida (?) community which had some “activity trip” planned to the Ark Encounter, much like they organize to other tourist attractions. I assumed that it got publicity precisely because it was such a rare and bizarre occurrence.

I do think that we as Christians should probably be much more publicly vocal about some nonsense that goes on under the name of Jesus Christ. I think it is sad that we allow a lot of non-Christians to assume that “To be a Christian is to believe the world is 6,000 years old and that humans rode on dinosaurs.” Yet, on the other hand, we have to be cautious about public rebuke, (And as much as I disapprove of much of what Ken Ham does and says, I would have to say that I believe he should have the freedom to build as many arks as he wishes as long as he uses no public money in doing so. People have a right to do stupid things with their money. Yes, it bugs me when such tourist attractions “uneducate” people, but that is one of the costs of freedom in a democracy. People have the right to be wrong and even stupid.)

I do think that Ken Ham will become more and more bizarre and overcome with his own sense of importance as the years go by. He is speaking more and more of a “new Reformation” underway, and implying that he is the evangelical Martin Luther. And he has a lot of followers who are very willing to carry that banner for him, so that he can pretend to be the reluctant leader yielding only to their pleas to lead them. Truly, I think the day will come when many Christian leaders will regret not speaking against him years earlier—because all Christians will pay a price for his confusion of the Gospel message.


(Patrick ) #10

It is pretty sad. FFRF (Freedom From Religion Foundation) had to stop one such trip this week. A recreation department of a small town in Virginia was sponsoring a tax-payer funded bus trip to Ark Encounter and the Creation Museum. Glad the town government came to their senses and cancelled the trip before a lawsuit was filed.


(Jay Johnson) #11

That ark has already sailed, so to speak. From an article here:

"It turns out the majority of Ark Encounter is being funded by a TIF granted by the City of Williamstown, Kentucky. On November 1, 2012, a Memorandum of Agreement (begins on page 55) approving $62 million in funding for Ark Encounter, LLC was signed by officials of Williamstown and the County of Grant.

“It said that, over a 30-year period, 75% of Ark Encounter’s real estate taxes would go toward repayment of the interest-free TIF. So instead of that money going to the city (and the citizens), it’ll be used to repay those bonds.
Also — pay attention to this one, potential Ark Park staffers — all employees working within the TIF district (that is, Ark Encounter) will pay a 2% job assessment fee on gross wages. In other words, $2 out of every pre-tax $100 dollars you make will go directly to paying off the for-profit Noah’s Ark attraction.”


(Patrick ) #12

It is not true that Ken Ham isn’t getting public money for the Ark. Ark Encounter gets a rebate of the sales tax people pay on tickets, refreshments, parking, and gift shop sales from the State of Kentucky. They can get up to 25% of the cost of building the “tourist attraction” back from sales tax rebates. Also they are getting property tax allowances from the town. And get this: each worker there has to sign a Statement of Faith to Ken Ham’s Genesis interpretative AND have a special local tax withdrawn from their pay for working there.


#13

How can my opinion that Ken Ham can build as many arks as he wants as long as he doesn’t use public money be “not true”? Now you are speaking nonsense. (Or else you are simply lying about my position.)

I even used boldface to make my position clear.

Disagree if you wish. But don’t tell me that I’m lying about my opinion.


(Jay Nelsestuen) #14

Point being, he’s using public money.

How that’s relevant to your opinion as to how things should be done, it’s not. :slight_smile:


#16

I wonder if the blowback from the Twitter announcement has made AIG think twice. Usually they followup with lots of redundant announcements on the Ark Encounter, Creation Museum, and Ken Ham Facebook pages—but so far I’ve seen nothing. I keep checking each day but still nothing. Why?

Meanwhile, they are pushing other new exhibits recently installed or coming soon.

I’ve been surprised (in contrast to a few years ago) how often fans of AIG are posting to those Facebook pages comments like “I’m generally a big fan of AIG and Ken Ham but there is absolutely no Biblical basis or scientific evidence for X and I don’t see how your declarations of X are not making you guilty of the very same things you accuse the scientists/other-Christians/secularists are doing.” Those kinds of comments used to be deleted within minutes—but that kind of censorship is not so common nowadays.

I’ve heard that some of the staff at AIG are concerned that Ken Ham is “getting ahead of his people”. Translation: He can only get too far beyond the scriptures before his followers start questioning his “inerrancy”.


#17

If anybody has a kid in public school that has arranged a trip to the Ark Encounter, contact the National Center for Science Education.


(Patrick ) #18

I clarified what I was saying by expanding my sentence.


#20

If kids are as cynical today as they were in my day, I think a public school trip to the Ark Encounter would be a sure way to convince a busload of kids that they were visiting some sort of parody of the American Bible Belt. How many kids would even laugh about the fact that not a single animal is housed in the Ark Encounter, not to mention that it doesn’t float? And a smart teacher would probably inform the kids that in a modern zoo it takes a ratio of staff to animals that makes the eight members of the Noah extended family sound very overworked—especially without the benefit of modern technology. (Whenever a question is posed that exposes the problems of constructing the ark, Ken Ham claims that the ancients had advance technologies we don’t know anything about. Yet, everything in the Ark Encounter displays is very primitive. Which is it? Advanced or primitive?)

If I were teaching high school science, I would actually love to take such a field trip and divide the class into “teams” trying to identify the greatest number of flaws in AIG claims. To get them started, we could discuss actual storage capacity for such a structure after allowing for load-bearing supports. (Using nothing but wood, I would estimate that over half of the internal volume would have to be occupied by wooden supports in all three axes. Frankly, the number is probably closer to 75% of internal volume.) I think lots of children would notice that Ham makes little provision for efficient storage capacity for food and fresh water. Air ventilation is non-existent. (There’s a silly “moon pool” exhibit but even if it were to somehow move enough air at 100% humidity through the entire structure, it wouldn’t help during the periods before and after the flood when the ark is sitting on land with everybody aboard.

The main problem with a field trip to either the Creation Museum or the Ark Encounter is that their Rules of Conduct prohibit any teaching or even any audible objections or criticism of the exhibits.

You can bet that kids are going to Google Ken Ham’s claim that it is the world’s largest all wood structure. Of course, it isn’t. For one, it isn’t all wood. Building codes require them to use steel bolts and connectors, not the wooden nails Ham originally proposed. Secondly, the Ark Encounter is only about 1/4th (if I recall??) of the size of the ACTUAL largest structure: the Atlas-I, the Trestle, where the military tested the damage done by nuclear pulse loads on aircraft etc. (And it has not a single metal nail.)

From what I’ve heard, the Ark Encounter exhibit include no calculations of things like storage volume, food and water needs, ventilation cfpm, etc.


#21

I don’t know, a lot of adults have been brainwashed, and they bring their kids to brainwash them also. Ham describes the experience as entering the world of Noah, but all they have is a huge landlocked building, no animals, state of the animatronics, cash registers, gift shops and restaurants. They do have some crap about handling all the manure.

Some non-creationists go there to see what it’s all about. Here’s a piece by Dan Phelps, president of the Kentucky Paleontological Society:

Ark Park on Opening Day


(Patrick ) #22

The exhibits are really bizarre. I see kids as young as two with ipods zipping around on the internet. Kids have a real good sense on what is real and what is fantasy. Are these kids really that indoctrinated that they would fall for this? If so, it really is awful. These kids are really going to disappointed and angry when they find out that the whole thing is bogus. The sad thing is how much damage is being done to these children who are interested in real science. They are being purposely being held back.