Saturday, April 28, 2012

Ark Encounters Apathy

For a second time in history, Noah's ark is not making a big public impression.

Object of SWNIDish scorn Answers in Genesis is notoriously engaged in a family theme park built around a replica of Noah's ark. The project needs about $25 million in donations to get going. Groundbreaking was slated for spring 2011, then spring 2012.

It is now mid-spring 2012, and per the Ark Encounter web site, a little more than $5 million has been raised. "That ain't hay," as the SWNIDish sire used to say, but it's roughly a fifth of the goal, a year after the initial deadline.

We expect that various explanations will address this puzzling condition: (a) the economy is bad; (b) investors are afraid to take a chance; (c) the media has savaged the project. We allow all of those, noting only that media savaging could be a positive for some endeavors, given the public's disdain for media opinions, that is, at least the part of the public that digs AIG.

But we wonder whether the hot air is starting to leak out of the Ken Ham's militant-young-earth balloon. Ham's hostility could be making him enemies as fast as it used to make him friends.

Or maybe we're just jealous. Ham has raised mass bootle for AIG in the past, both more and faster than has any organization with which SWNID has been personally associated. But we will assert nevertheless that when fundraising is based on a personality, the money can disappear as quickly as it once appeared.

17 comments:

Raymond said...

I find myself wondering how Noah did his fund-raising...

Jon A. Alfred E. Michael J. Wile E. SWNID said...

If he was smart, he either sold short on livestock futures or issued bonds.

Tom_Ky said...

I can't say I'm disappointed. I find the whole park unseemly.

Anonymous said...

Why try to ridicule something that can be a teaching tool to millions who have never heard the truth.

God caused a great flood to cover the entire earth and used an ark to carry one family to safety.

MAB said...

AIGs biggest problem with the ark may not be the money (they continue to take in millions / year). I recently contacted them to ask how they intend to prove their ark could actually float. The response was that they will submit the architectural drawings to the appropriate authorities. The problem is that local building codes don't cover so called float able ships built on land.

Can a 450' wooden boat even float? If so AIG will need to prove it - as they claim.

Mark

MAB said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ken Ham said...

Dr. Weatherly expresses his doubt about the project ever being completed. While he acknowledges that the economy is not doing well and that the Ark Encounter is a source of controversy in secular society, Dr. Weatherly also writes, “But we wonder whether the hot air is starting to leak out of the Ken Ham’s militant-young-earth balloon. Ham’s hostility could be making him enemies as fast as it used to make him friends.” Now, doesn’t that comment seem a little hostile itself?

I just never cease to be amazed by the lack of scholarship by these professors who use their platforms to attack the biblical positions we hold at AiG. For instance, Dr. Weatherly does not explain that the Ark project is a for-profit enterprise, owned not by us but the Ark Encounter LLC of Springfield, Missouri. He probably does not cover that detail because as far as we know he never asked us and never searched out the matter; he just seems to have written on the basis of hearsay instead of doing scholarly research. AiG is raising most of its financial commitment to the project through donations (and we are building one attraction, the Ark, of nine total Bible-themed attractions). By far the bulk of the revenue for the entire Ark Encounter will come from private funding sources, and we/they are well underway with this aspect of the funding. There are also Ark memberships that are a part of the revenue raising. While we are the designers and operators of the Ark, we are one member of the LLC.

Also, the comment “Ken Ham’s militant-young-earth balloon,” I believe, reveals the real agenda behind his attack. The bottom line is that he does not hold to the position on a literal Genesis as we do and seems to be mocking those who hold to a young earth and universe. Of course, if Dr. Weatherly holds to the belief in millions of years (which I believe is implied by the wording in his blog post), he is ultimately blaming God for death, disease, and suffering occurring for a very long time before Adam appeared, instead of blaming our sin for suffering and death.

Preachr34 said...

The real issue is one of Authority. Either you believe the Bible is what it claims to be...The Authoritative Word of our Righteous and Holy GOD, or you dismiss it and redefine what it says based on the word of man.

Since faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of GOD...it says a lot about what your faith is in, when you reject the Word it is based on. Since the foundation of the Cross is in Genesis, rejecting it removes the reason for the Cross.

Anonymous said...

Aaaaaand things like this are why I left your school and never looked back. There was so much hypocrisy at CCU and I just couldn't stand it. Thank God for ministries like AiG that unashamedly proclaim the authority of the Bible in it's ENTIRETY!

Jon A. Alfred E. Michael J. Wile E. SWNID said...

Hmm. We said "investors" but didn't acknowledge that this is a for-profit endeavor? We are hostile while acknowledging the financial success of AIG. We refer to a "militant-young-earth balloon" and we are showing hostility? Well, the balloon was a metaphor, Mr. Ham is clearly a young-earth advocate, and he's certainly aggressive about it, "militant" again being a metaphor.

But we're hostile. And we like all those professors who are bad scholars. And we probably don't know our theology and disbelieve the Bible.

Just what one would expect to hear from Mr. Ham. Just what we've been hearing for so many years.

We rest our case.

Anonymous said...

But anon, apparently you did look back, at May 03, 2012 7:21 PM, precisely the moment when a new pillar of salt formed in Central Kentucky (a guess, admittedly).

Dr. Love said...

This is the best thing ever to happen on the internet.

MAB said...

There could be another reason why fundraising for the ark project is stalled. The ark is part of a 'fun' theme park but the ark is a symbol of God destroying all life on earth.

How about springing this on the kids this summer: 'Hey instead of going to Disney Land, lets go find out how God killed everything on earth.'

Even the most passionate YEC might have some reservations about that kind of vacation. So added to the technical and financial issues with building such a monstrosity is emotional.


On the technical side:

Mr. Ham, if you read this, would you consider addressing the issue of feasibility of your proposed ark? Many skeptics would say a wooden boat that big could not be made seaworthy. AIG has said that the ark project would prove the skeptics wrong. You wouldn't actually have to build the ark to do so - all that is needed is to show how a boat that size - made out of wood - could survive a year in water. Surely you have hired engineers and architects to draw up the plans. Why not make those documents public?

Mark

Jim Shoes said...

I object to Ken Ham's nonliteral use of the word "literal" to refer to his interpretation of Genesis.

Christian said...

I am a former student of SWNID and I have openly and repeatedly been a YEC proponent on this blog. I've never felt attacked. What he tires himself in jest and in self-mocking (sort of) is what we all are. We all believe we are right about what we believe or else we wouldn't believe it. The amazing thing about SWNID is that even when he thinks you're wrong, he isn't a jerk to you even when you are to him. I speak from experience. This is why I respect him.

Ken Ham, I used to respect you until in the past few years you have become publicly hateful to brothers.

Christian said...

"tires" should be "terms"

Anonymous said...

Does anyone else find it a little ironic that this is being build on 450 million year old sea bed. The fossils embedded in the ordivician limestone show the true beginning of the life on earth.