By Andrew L. Seidel
Freedom From Religion Foundation
In a blog post thin on both facts and content, Ken Ham claims that the Freedom From Religion Foundation only wants freedom from Christianity.
Facts are not Ken’s friend. Like a child sticking his fingers in his ears and screaming “LA-LA-LA-LA-LA,” Ken Ham goes out of his way to avoid them. But that’s to be expected from someone who has built two enormous monuments to his fact-immune ideology: creationism. Between the Creation “Museum” and the Ark Park (or as locals more accurately refer to it, the “Genocide and Incest Park”) Ham has effectively enshrined ignorance in Kentucky. Twice.
Ham’s accusation is leveled at FFRF all the time. And we’ve debunked it every time. Had Ham bothered to seek out facts, he would have seen that I addressed this fallacious charge a few weeks ago. Ham should read the whole thing, since it gives quite a few recent examples of FFRF battling non-Christian encroachments into government. But here’s the main answer to his allegation:
Groups seeking to uphold the Constitution “target” Christians because we “target” the violators and, as Christians are still the majority, most of theocrats violating the Constitution are Christian. It’s a fact. FFRF receives thousands of complaints about state/church violations annually, almost all concern government officials imposing Christianity on citizens. Currently, Muslims comprise about 1 percent of the U.S. population, so it’s hardly surprising FFRF receives very few bona fide complaints about the Muslim religion entangled with our government.
But again, concrete counterexamples and statistics are facts; and Ham is not a fan of facts. That’s why he trots out this counterfactual banality: “They claim that atheism is not a religion, but it is!” Sure it is, Ken, just like bald is a hair color and abstinence is a sex position.
Ham is particularly upset that we distributed literature in Delta County Schools (Colo.). After noting that the schools can’t “discriminate on the type of literature being” distributed, Ham asks, “Why would they specifically choose something with ‘an opposite viewpoint’ from the Bible to present to students?” Self-deception is an integral part of any pious believer’s mindset, but even this is a bit much coming from Ham who is Kentucky’s reigning champion of discrimination and is doing all he can to muzzle factual viewpoints at his for-profit business venture.
Ham’s Ark Genocide and Incest Park is getting up to $18 million in tax incentives. And Ham only wants to hire young earth creationists—people as committed to spreading ignorance as he his. But when a business, like a theme park, takes public tax incentives, it has to abide by nondiscrimination laws.
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This was all argued in court. Ham actually sued, and in a shocking decision, the federal court issued a preliminary ruling that the park could get public money and discriminate. That came down in January. In December, Matt Bevin was elected Kentucky governor and has refused to continue the case in court. So that case, which should have been an easy decision for the appeals court, is all but dead.
Let me do a bit of prophesizing. Here’s what’s going to happen. Ham is going to refuse to hire a non-Christian. Some lucky employment discrimination lawyer will get to sue Ham for millions in court. Only this time, there won’t be an election to save him. Ham and his ark are going down. It’s just a matter of time.
Near the end of his unfocused spiel, Ham writes:
Though it’s easy to get angry at groups like FFRF, remember that they aren’t ultimately fighting against us, but against Jesus and His message. … Please pray that they will see their need and will repent and trust in Jesus Christ.
Ham can pray all he wants. While he’s talking to himself, we at the Freedom From Religion Foundation keep working to ensure that state and church remain separate and that religious zealots like Ham are kept out of our public schools. Perhaps you’d like to join us?
FFRF is a national nonprofit dedicated to keeping state and church separate and educating about nontheism. We depend on member support, please join today.