In our experience, this is a unique article from Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo) — the ayatollah of Appalachia, the world’s holiest man who knows more about religion and science than everyone else. He just posted this at the website of Answers in Genesis (AIG), his creationist ministry: A Battle of Letters to the Editor.
Whoopie! We love letters-to-the-editor around here, although Hambo’s taste in such things probably differs from ours. Anyway, here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis, and occasional Curmudgeonly interjections that look [like this]:
In late January, a frequent Answers in Genesis’ critic had her letter appear in one of our local newspapers, the Kenton Recorder (Kenton County, Kentucky, not far from the Creation Museum). It was in response to my guest column two weeks prior in the same paper. Over the years, Nancy R. has written letters to the editor in various newspapers to attack the Creation Museum and Ark Encounter. [Gasp!] Her latest letter is below. It is followed by a rebuttal letter from Dr. Stephen Kees, a dentist in our area and an avid AiG supporter.
This is very bold of ol’ Hambo. He’s copying a critical letter and putting it on his website. He must have a lot of confidence in the rebuttal from that creationist dentist. Okay, first he copies the critical letter from Nancy. She says:
It is not to celebrate as Ken Ham, the purveyor of Answers in Genesis, would have the 25th anniversary so much as a time to mourn that the Creation Museum and the more recent Ark are taken seriously and not what they are — money-making amusement parks. He can site all the attendance numbers he likes. The tragic number is the many young people who are exposed to junk science.
Pretty good letter. Here’s a little more:
One asks faith leaders for the meaning of life — one asks geologists, biologists, chemists and physicists among other sciences for answers to science. The two need not be mutually exclusive but there is a limit. It is science and religion, not religion vs. science.
This [sic] PhD holders Mr. Ham mentions have been discredited by the science community for not allowing open review of their work for openers. It does not count if the handful of them praise each other or where they attained their degrees. Those same institutions have not endorsed their work.
That’s enough. You can click over there to read it all. Now Hambo presents the wondrous rebuttal from the creationist dentist, who tells us:
I am responding to a letter-writer who recently attacked the Ark Encounter and Creation Museum. She labeled them as “money-making amusement parks” and challenged the credibility of their impressive scientists. First, the attractions are owned and operated by a nonprofit organization, Answers in Genesis. [Ooooooooooooh!] Any money they might make at the end of the year is returned to AIG to use toward developing their attractions.
Wowie! It all goes back into the ministry. How noble. But is that the whole story? The only time we posted about AIG’s tax returns was in December of 2015 — see Answers in Genesis — A Dynasty of Drool?, where it was revealed that AIG employs seven family members — in addition to Hambo himself. In fiscal 2012-13, Ham and his family members received a total of $456,437 in compensation from Answers in Genesis. And this was before the ark was built!
We are not in the mood to go through the tax returns for AIG, but if that’s your pleasure, here’s their 990 for 2016. Schedule J, Compensation Information, starts on page 40 and goes on for several pages. Hambo’s total compensation that year was $251K. His son, Jeremy, got $44K, his daughter, Rene Hodge, got $38K, and Kristel Ham, another daughter, got $26K. Tricia Ham, a sister-in-law, got $15K, and Susan Ham, a daughter-in-law, got $10K. That’s what we saw after a quick scan. You might discover more goodies. Anyway, the letter from the creationist dentist continues:
Second, they are not “amusement” parks, which suggest frivolous places with thrill rides like roller coasters. The Ark Encounter is a historical themed attraction.
Got that? Hambo’s creation museum and ark replica are serious stuff, not frivolous amusement parks. What else does the dentist say? Ah, now he defends Hambo’s creation scientists:
AIG has full-time scientists with doctorate degrees from schools like Harvard, Brown, Ohio State, and many others, yet the letter-writer denigrated their academic achievements by claiming that the scientists will “not allow open review of their work.” That’s preposterous. These scientists have had several papers published in peer-reviewed secular journals.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! There are no creationist papers published in serious science journals. Hambo’s “scientists” publish their creationist stuff in Hambo’s magazine. This is the rest of the creationist dentist’s letter:
As someone trained in science [Hee hee!], I find it laughable when closed-minded naysayers make false claims to support their one-sided worldview.
Hambo was so impressed by the dentist’s letter that he posted both of them, so his drooling fans could see how everything Nancy said was utterly crushed. Smart move, Hambo!
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