As you can imagine, there’s been a lot of criticism of the Ark Encounter project, a religious theme park under construction in northern Kentucky, promoted by Answers in Genesis (AIG), the creationist ministry of Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo) — the Australian entrepreneur who has become the ayatollah of Appalachia, famed for the infamous, mind-boggling Creation Museum.
Ol’ Hambo has just posted Answers for the Ark Scoffers. He says, with bold font added by us:
Now that the construction of the life-size Noah’s Ark (the first phase of the Ark Encounter project) is well under way, I thought it time to respond to the non-Christian (and even Christian) scoffers and critics. … It seems to me that these days the fruit of Internet is a cesspool of nastiness, immorality, name-calling, ignorance, anti-Christian propaganda, stupidity, illogical statements, fallacies, and foolishness. … Let me deal with just some of what the scoffers and critics claim.
The “fruit of internet” is also a cesspool of creationism, but you know that. Hambo then gives us a list of 15 different claims his critics are making, and he responds to each. To keep this manageable, we’ll list his claims — most of them — with a very brief excerpt from his responses. Here we go:
Claim 1. There is no way anyone could build a wooden ship the size of the Ark so it would actually float!
Hambo’s response: His Ark is 510 feet long, and there are records of wooden ships of comparable size. But according to Wikipedia’s List of longest wooden ships — the largest wooden ship ever built had a “total length” of 137 metres (449 ft), with a “length on deck” of 107 m (351 ft). “The 30 m (98 ft)-difference is due to her extremely long jib boom of 30 m (98 ft) its out-board length being 27 m (89 ft).”
Claim 2: You shouldn’t be pouring all that concrete, as Noah didn’t use it.
Well, besides the fact that we really don’t know all that Noah did or didn’t do or use, Answers in Genesis is building this life-size Ark as a themed attraction that will see around two million visitors a year! To prepare for these visitors, we have to provide restrooms, food service, elevators, handicap accessibility, stairs, fire escape routes, and much more in the Ark.
Great answer! How do you know Noah didn’t use concrete? Were you there? Here’s more:
Claim 3: With the number of trees you chopped down to build this wooden structure, you are helping destroy the environment.
Hambo’s response is that he’s a great environmentalist.
Some of these are boring, so we’ll skip around to get the good ones — well, the better ones:
Claim 5: You should only have one person building the Ark, as only one person, Noah, built it.
Actually, the Bible doesn’t say how many people built the Ark. … Just as we have done today to build the Ark, it is very possible Noah hired workers to help him construct the Ark (even though they may have scoffed at Noah as they worked).
Yeah! Were you there? The list continues:
Claim 7: But why are you using tools and cranes and other technology to build the Ark? Noah didn’t have such technology!
I’ve realized that even many Christians (most of them unwittingly) have adopted an evolutionary view of man’s intelligence and achievements over the millennia. Many people today believe that ancient man slowly went from making “primitive” items (e.g., stone tools) to working with bronze and iron. But the evidence researchers have collected from around the globe refutes this false evolutionary view of human history. Humans have been highly intelligent from the beginning and could quickly gain knowledge to create sophisticated technology. … Who knows what remarkable things were created by geniuses when Noah was building the great Ark?
That’s another “Where you there?” response. Moving along:
Claim 14: You are charging an admission fee to visit the Ark to make a lot of money.
Any major facility costs a lot of money not only to build, but also to maintain and staff. Just the operating and maintenance costs alone for the Ark will be enormous. … But, the entrance fee will be nothing like that to get into Disney World, Universal Studios, or many other theme parks.
Yeah. Besides, why bother with Disney World when you can visit Hambo’s world? And here’s the last:
Claim 15: Now you’re trying to make a buck out of charging people to view the Ark’s construction.
We have received thousands of requests from supporters to view the Ark’s construction. We understand this is such a unique opportunity for them, and we really want people to be able to witness the building of this incredible project. So, we had to create a new parking lot, a viewing cabin, and an observation deck. We also need to have a staff member and public safety officer on the premises to make this possible, and it all costs money. Since we cannot take from the funds donated for the Ark’s construction, the low fee we are charging per vehicle to visit the site will help offset the costs involved.
So there you are. All the scoffers’ objections have been answered. Well, he didn’t mention his litigation against Kentucky to get millions in sales tax rebates, but we assume that’s because none of his critics have mentioned it. There couldn’t be any objections that Hambo chose not to disclose, because Hambo is an honorable man!
We had to leave out a lot of material, so click over there to see the whole list and Hambo’s complete responses. You’ll be convinced that Hambo is doing the very best he can.
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