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Kentucky’s Ark Encounter

Published December 7th, 2010 by Bobby Henderson

ArkEncounter

The New York Times reports:

the state of Kentucky The state has promised generous tax incentives to a group of entrepreneurs who plan to construct a full-size replica of Noah’s ark, load it with animals and actors, and make it the centerpiece of a Bible-based tourist attraction called Ark Encounter.

Since Gov. Steven L. Beshear announced the plan on Wednesday, some constitutional experts have raised alarms over whether government backing for an enterprise that promotes religion violates the First Amendment’s requirement of separation of church and state. But Mr. Beshear, a Democrat, said the arrangement posed no constitutional problem, and brushed off questions about his stand on creationism.

“The people of Kentucky didn’t elect me governor to debate religion,” he said at a news conference. “They elected me governor to create jobs.”

Gov Beshear, you can expect the Church of Flying Spaghetti Monster theme park submission soon.  



140 Responses to “Kentucky’s Ark Encounter”

  1. Mird says:

    Bobby, you should seriously write a letter with a FSM theme park proposal. Something about how seeing as though they’re breaking the 4th Ammendment (or whatever, I’m English), then it’s apparently okay to have a FSM tax-funded theme park too.

  2. piratesmee says:

    Gov. Beshear: So, when any religious groups seeks to build or expand a church, the state should provide tax breaks because it will support the construction industry and bring jobs.

  3. Justin Chase says:

    I can almost taste the beer volcano now! Now that is a theme park I would literally drive half way across the country for!

  4. N Kalanaga says:

    I live in Kentucky, and don’t plan to go this theme park. But in this case, I think the governor is right. This is not a worship facility. It’s a theme park, in other words, fantasy. I doubt that it will have any greater religious effect than Disney’s parks, and might actually bring some tourists in. Are angels, devils, and (probably) unseaworthy arks any different from fairies, ogres, and talking mice?

    Incidentally, the ACLU has also said that they don’t see any problem, for what it’s worth.

    As for an FSM theme park, why not? If it makes money, and attracts tourists, we’ll take the jobs.

    • piratesmee says:

      Actually, there is a difference: The theme park will promote the fantasy as reality — that the religious stories of the Bible are true. Taxpayer dollars will support religious contentions. Disney never claimed fairies, ogres, and talking mice actually existed.

    • B. says:

      An firing squad employs at least 5 people. In order to create jobs I therefore decide to bring firing squads back to prisons. It will surely save the economy.

    • theFewtheProudtheMarinara says:

      Actually, I agree with N here. If it’s a business venture which will benefit the area, let it be. It WOULD be nice, though if they would have an exhibit calculating the space needed for all species on earth AND their feed.

      • Noodlity says:

        I’m with you on this one.

        Such a theme park can in fact prove counterproductive to any religious effort. After all, theme parks are hardly taken seriously even by kids, let alone adults, and this can carry over to the source material. It will do to the Xian bible what “Twilight” did to “Bram Stoker’s Dracula”.

      • B. says:

        Jobs for an area is always good. But I think its naive thinking that a state support for a thing like this will stay at its benefits for business. Saying “Its good for business” is a way of sneaking pass the rules of separation between church and state.

        A mini Mecka to which American Muslims could make an unofficial hajja would probably give the area lots of business, but that would hardly been as appreciated.

        • Noodlity says:

          A fair point, B..

          The thing is, a less than serious representation of religious dogmas actually does more to undermine them than anything else. They are ridiculous by design, and without the artificially instilled sense of reverence that is found in churches, their flaws will only become more obvious. Even per your example, a Mini Mecca, with Muhammad candy bars, and a “Marry-your-9-year-old-cousin Go Round”, will be a bane to the Muslim world.

          Now, the tax incentive deal is a real issue. But so is the US economy. While it would be unwise to sacrifice political neutrality for social gain, right now the Americans need all they can get. As far as I checked, this particular Governor has also been trying to legalize gambling in the state, which also fits with his stated intention to increase work and cash flow by any means necessary. I’d say he’s worth getting a free pass, at least for now.

        • B. says:

          If you say he’s just a capitalist and not a religious nutter, I’ll trust you on that.

          I’m just slightly weary about the people that are NOT just capitalists, looking at this, and feel that their zealousness is now legitimized and therefore justified.

        • Noodlity says:

          Well, the guy’s other ventures include an attempt to cut the state’s debts by at least a hundred milllion dollars, and to attract the building of a electric car manifacturing plant. Looks like he really is just worried about money; I wouldn’t blame him.

          Also, he’s a Democrat (who tend to be more liberal on religious matters) , and a member of a church that’s quite lax on scripture interpretation. All in all, doesn’t seem to rate high on zeal levels.

      • Keith says:

        Noah came from Gallifrey. It makes sense since the ark was obviously bigger on the inside than the outside.

    • S Connors says:

      Are angels, devils, and (probably) unseaworthy arks any different from fairies, ogres, and talking mice?

      Well yes….because most people are intelligent enough to know fairies, ogres and talking mice don’t exist. These wackos think angels, demons and fables are real and that’s truly scary.

      This park is there to promote ignorance and to keep perpetuating this myth.

  5. N Kalanaga says:

    Maybe, maybe not, but I doubt that it will change anyone’s mind, one way or the other. Actually, it will probably do just the opposite. After seeing it, anybody with an open mind will realize how UNlikely Noah’s story really is. As one fantasy writer said, “what did the shrews eat?”, considering that they eat more than their body weight daily, and only other animals…

    And, again, if any other religion wants to start their own, the more the merrier. I’d be more likely to go to an FSM theme park. Or maybe whichever Eastern religion it is that says the the Earth sits on elephants standing on a turtle, on a bigger turtle, on a yet bigger turtle, and it’s turtles all the way down? THAT would be something to recreate.

    I doubt that this gets too far anyway, because he’ll have to have other investors, and banks aren’t really interested in financing theme parks right now. In possibly related news, the “Creation Museum”, also in Kentucky, is having finacial problems, due to a lack of visitors. Not suprising, as the local Catholic Bishop said at their opening that one could get better entertainment AND theology by watching the Flintstones.

    • FENWICK says:

      For once, I find myself agreeing with a Catholic Bishop. The Creation Museum is one big laugh for anyone able to think intelligently. Search for “T rex ate coconuts” for a fuller expose of this edifice and its paradigm. I contributed copiously to the thread under the webname FENWICK.

      Ramen

      • kao says:

        here i m quoting http://pandasthumb.org/archives/2009/03/t-rex.html#comment-panels on same subject ^^ this comment was on second page


        Randy replied to comment from Matt G | March 24, 2009 12:32 PM | Edit

        Matt G said:

        Crushing coconuts with those teeth? I think not. How would a coconut stay in place as the animal bit down? An intelligent agency would surely see that large, flat teeth would be far superior for this task.

        Prehaps a swallow held it by the husk so the T-Rex could get at it.
        mrg replied to comment from Randy | March 24, 2009 12:39 PM | Edit

        Randy said:

        Prehaps a swallow held it by the husk so the T-Rex could get at it.

        Is that an African or European swallow?
        chuck | March 24, 2009 12:56 PM | Edit

        Eh? what? I don’t know! AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH ”

        now let have people doing this joke during the visit would be a nice laught ( and show how much stupid the idea is)

        Ramen

        • theFewtheProudtheMarinara says:

          “large, flat teeth would be far superior for this task”
          But kao – form following function implies – gasp! -evolution!

    • S Connors says:

      The problem is…. the kind of people that will be flocking to see it DO NOT HAVE OPEN MINDS. They’re religious sheeple and this is only going to REINFORCE belief in their fairytale.

  6. Theo says:

    FSM Theme park proposal! Do it do it do it.

  7. kao says:

    first what the F is on the top left of the ark? some shitty biiiig wood stuff to look cool? and for the art about the park, it look a bit empty, i mean there is just like 4 5 building and the ark ( and the lac verrry important, nothing on it and to small to test the ark XD)

    i would be more in favor or a FSM park, ( and the beer industry too), it would be more challenge that this IKEA Ark,but only probleme would be where put stripper and what drink for kid ( or people that don t drink beer or rhum).

    to finish, as for the “it would be help/ or not against religion because it is a theme park, there is already a park about jesus ( u cna see it in religolo movie, and Bill should talk about FSM )

    have a nice day full of Ramen and pasta

    • kao says:

      also ( sorry for repost)

      let have a minute of silence for the poor creationist kids trying to finish Pokemon game, with only unevoled pokemon ( well they DO evolve so it is against they logic right,?)

      • Keith says:

        That’s the absurdity of the religious freaks who publicly burn Pokemon games. Pokemon (and Digimon) evolution has nothing to do with Darwinian evolution. It’s just a Pokemon’s equivalent of its voice breaking and its balls dropping. Perhaps they will try to ban puberty as well.

        • Jamie says:

          LOL. Mind if I store that argument to use elsewhere?

        • Keith says:

          Feel free Jamie

  8. Brian Fritzen says:

    The Christians are just mad because our pirates sank their ark.

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