By now, everyone knows about Ark Encounter, the creationist theme park nearing completion in Northern Kentucky. It’s a bizarre, land-locked “replica” of Noah’s Ark, owned and run by a subsidiary of Answers in Genesis (AIG) — the creationist ministry of Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo).
It appears that the biblical extravaganza is getting a lot of criticism, so instead of turning the other cheek, ol’ Hambo is lashing out at this critics. This appeared at his blog a couple of days ago: Ark Prejudice. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us:
It seems like every time we post something on Facebook about the progress of the Ark Encounter in Northern Kentucky, someone will charge that we are wasting money — money that instead should go to the starving people around the world, they declare.
Your Curmudgeon isn’t one of those critics. It’s true that we think Hambo’s ark is spectacularly goofy, but if that’s what people choose to spend their money on, it’s their business, not ours. Of course, we don’t think government should spend taxpayers’ money on such things, but that’s a different issue. Back to Hambo:
Recently I was asked about that claim [of wasting money] and I answered this way:
[Hambo quotes himself:] That question shows a lot of prejudice. Do you ask that same question to the builders of the massive cruise ships that are being built? Each one costs many times the amount of the Ark and they are built just for entertainment purposes — why not accuse the cruise lines of depriving food to starving people? What about Disney, Universal, and all the amusement theme parks that are created just for entertainment — do these critics level the same charge at them? And during this presidential election year, what about all the hundreds of millions of dollars that are being spent on candidates’ campaigns? And think about football or baseball stadiums that each cost more than the Ark project (some are over $1 billion) and they are just for sports entertainment?
Those are fair remarks. As we said, people should be free to spend their money any way they like. But Hambo also gives an odd example:
And what about the extraordinary waste we hear about concerning many government programs, and I could go on and on.
Obviously, no one can justify government waste. People are forced to pay taxes, so money the government spends isn’t spent voluntarily. It’s odd that Hambo doesn’t see the distinction, but we won’t quibble. The other examples he gave are good ones. Let’s read on:
So the question is: why is it that the Ark is being singled out for this criticism? (It was also made against the Creation Museum when we were building it.) It’s because of prejudice!
Oooooooooooooh — it’s prejudice! Hambo continues:
The charge that money should go instead to the hungry comes from critics who don’t agree with our Christian message and don’t want us to build such a prominent facility to proclaim the truth of God’s Word and the gospel.
Aha — it’s prejudice against Christians! Here’s more:
Now while it is true that some Christians have made the same claim that our donors should be giving money to needy people and not the Ark, I find they are people who also don’t agree with our message — particularly our stand on a literal Genesis.
Those people aren’t real Christians! Moving along:
Yes, their prejudice against the Ark’s message really stands out. Actually it illustrates that these charges are a part of a larger spiritual battle.
Hambo is engaged in a spiritual battle! How exciting! Another excerpt:
And in a sense it’s also about jealousy. I don’t usually hear the same accusations against churches that are building new auditoriums or other facilities, but, because the Ark is going to be so prominent in the world as it publicly proclaiming God’s Word and the gospel, it gets singled out by people who don’t like our message and are irritated by its prominence.
We get the impression that in Hambo’s opinion, all of his critics are evil. One more excerpt:
In our culture we are seeing more and more of this intolerance against biblical Christianity. But it also encourages me, because there wouldn’t such opposition if the Ark wasn’t going to be a force in the culture!
We have doubts that Hambo’s ark is going to be a significant cultural force, but if he thinks he’s going to change the world, that’s okay with us. Everyone is entitled to his own fantasies.
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