Internet Goosing the Antithesis

Saturday, May 26, 2007

A Reasonable Rally?

The Creation Museum run by Ken Ham's Answers in Genesis is having its grand opening this weekend, just south of my hometown of Cincinnati.

It's somewhat ironic that a hardcore Creationist organization, which makes no bones about promoting Christian theology, should be enjoying such an upswell of support, even as the more scientifically self-conscious Intelligent Design organization (the Discovery Institute) has been reeling since the decision at Dover in 2005.

From the Museum's press release:
Set to open on May 28, 2007, at its location in northern Kentucky 2 exits west of the Cincinnati Airport, this $27 million “walk through history” museum will counter evolutionary natural history museums that turn minds against Scripture – and Jesus Christ, the Creator of the universe.
The museum's striking exhibits demonstrate to guests that the Bible is the “true history book of the universe” as they take a time journey through a visual presentation of the “Seven C’s of History” according to Scripture: Creation, Corruption, Catastrophe, Confusion, Christ, Cross and Consummation.
I cannot imagine a more inaccurate educational travesty, nor a more insulting parody of the scientific process.

And yet, I also cannot imagine anything productive coming from a protest of the damned thing.

Apparently, an organized protest calling itself the "Rally for Reason," which is endorsed by American Atheists, the Institute for Humanist Studies, the Secular Coalition for America, and the Freedom From Religion Foundation, is being planned for the day of the museum's grand opening, at the Answers in Genesis building in Kentucky. Planned speakers include Edwin Kagin, Frank Zindler, the Smalkowskis, and even Hemant Mehta.

Quite frankly, this level of organization and interaction among atheists is relatively as impressive as the planning which went into the Creation Museum. But I think that it's misplaced.

The thing is, this museum has been funded by private money, on private property, and attendance is strictly voluntary. Yes, of course it's as ridiculous as a Flat Earth Museum, but even if the Flat Earth Society came up with some way to build one, so what? I just don't see any reason to organize a protest against any privately-funded group. It smacks of political grandstanding, and I find that distasteful. I find myself in agreement with Penn Jillette on this matter, who's said that he thinks the best solution to awful ideas is the free exchange of other ideas. Marching back and forth in Northern Kentucky on Memorial Day with a megaphone just doesn't strike me as much different than lobbying to have Answers in Genesis' website shut down. Besides, it would be much more entertaining to simply publicize what goes on inside these crazy Creationist museums.

Post a Comment


At 5/26/2007 11:08 AM, Blogger Edwin Kagin declaimed...

If you can't run with the big dogs stay on the porch.

At 5/26/2007 2:50 PM, Blogger BlackSun declaimed...

I beg to differ. Even though the creationist museum is not government funded, I think it's important to raise public consciousness as to what a travesty it is. Also, since churches are tax-exempt, the money contributed to this fraud has indirectly been diverted from the public trust.

You used the analogy of trying to shut down the "Answers in Genesis" website. I don't think the analogy works. The web equivalent of the Rally for Reason would be more like the Carnival of the Godless.

No one attending the Rally for Reason expects the museum to be shut down. I think they are simply looking to get on the news and stop the intellectual free-ride these anti-science morons would be getting if no reasonable people showed up at their opening party.

At 5/26/2007 3:29 PM, Blogger Zachary Moore declaimed...


Sorry, I just think that a dog shouldn't bark in someone else's yard.

At 5/26/2007 3:40 PM, Blogger Zachary Moore declaimed...


Yeah, I get what you're saying. But I think that organizing a protest is a step too far. It makes it seem like this is just a clash of ideologies, you know?

I'll give you the tax-exempt angle, but that seems mighty weak to me. Especially since I don't sympathize much with the concept of taxes, and don't find the concept of a "public trust" very coherent either.

I suppose that riding the coattails of the museum's publicity is one way to get your message across, but Fred Phelps has learned how to take advantage of publicity also, and I'm not sure that I want to follow his example.

At 5/27/2007 9:43 AM, Blogger Ronnie declaimed...

It's a form of child abuse to instill false data into a growing mind, to prevent that child from some day being eligible for a job grounded on facts in physics, geology, and evolutionary biology as surviving in the world becomes more challenging.Raising a child in one's religion by attending services and reading the Bible is one thing, but prsenting false science in such a beguiling way is dirty pool.

At 5/29/2007 4:04 AM, Blogger MothandRust declaimed...

Veloceraptors on Noah's Ark? As stupid as that sounds, it would make a really fun and gorey movie.

At 5/29/2007 9:20 PM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

What would be the point of such a protest? What would it accomplish? Apart from making you look like asses?

At 5/29/2007 10:33 PM, Blogger bpabbott declaimed...

Hi BlackSun,

blacksun wrote: "I beg to differ. Even though the creationist museum is not government funded, I think it's important to raise public consciousness as to what a travesty it is. Also, since churches are tax-exempt, the money contributed to this fraud has indirectly been diverted from the public trust."

Personally, I think a direct attack of the museum will only polarize those marginalized. IMO, it is more constructive to teach how science is done and leave the destructive antics to the false prophets of Christ.

With regards to tax free status for Creationist museums ... ever hear of Kent Hovind? ;-)

As a Floridian, I'm thrilled this dolt's museum is out of business :-)

At 6/01/2007 4:45 PM, Blogger Chris declaimed...


Great post. I thought I was the only atheist around who thought a protest of this museum was a really bad idea. Why give it free publicity by creating more hoopla around its opening? Why fuel the fire for a martyr complex?



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