Answers in Genesis: Ark Park Jobs Link Removed After Church-State Criticism

Answers in Genesis, the organization behind the Creation Museum and the forthcoming Ark Encounter has had a jobs page on their Website for some time.  And until just yesterday, the site had an "Ark Encounter Jobs" link as part of that page (cached page from Feb. 2) -- right above the statement: "All job applicants need to supply a written statement of their testimony, a statement of what they believe regarding creation and a statement that they have read and can support the AiG statement of faith."

The organization's required Statement of Faith would be a problem for Ark Encounter jobs, one would think, since the citizens of Kentucky will be subsidizing the project with their tax dollars.  The statement of faith clearly requires employees to adhere to a fundamentalist Christian faith and a literal interpretation of Biblical text -- a problem for any tax-paying Kentuckians of any other (or no) faith.

Some of the highlights from AiG's statement of faith:
  • The 66 books of the Bible are the written Word of God. The Bible is divinely inspired and inerrant throughout. Its assertions are factually true in all the original autographs. It is the supreme authority in everything it teaches. Its authority is not limited to spiritual, religious, or redemptive themes but includes its assertions in such fields as history and science.
  • The final guide to the interpretation of Scripture is Scripture itself.
  • The account of origins presented in Genesis is a simple but factual presentation of actual events and therefore provides a reliable framework for scientific research into the question of the origin and history of life, mankind, the earth and the universe.
  • The great Flood of Genesis was an actual historic event, worldwide (global) in its extent and effect.
  • Those who do not believe in Christ are subject to everlasting conscious punishment, but believers enjoy eternal life with God.
  • The only legitimate marriage is the joining of one man and one woman. Any forms of homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexuality, incest, fornication, adultery, pornography, etc., are sinful perversions of God’s gift of sex.
AiG spokesperson Ken Ham has frequently been a source of frustration (and comedy, to be sure) to biologist P.Z. Myers, a noted atheist and highly regarded ScienceBlogs staple (Myers's corner is the popular Pharyngula blog).  Ken Ham has also spent his fair share of time writing about Myers on his blog.  But on Wednesday, Myers brought the Ark Jobs conflict of interest to his readers' attention with a post, "Great Jobs In Kentucky!" The comments section of the page contains lengthy discussion of the constitutionality of such requirements in a place of business partly made possible by tax incentives.  And although, to be fair, the Ark Park Jobs link took users to a page which stated that there currently were no jobs listed, it is notable that the link vanished almost immediately after Myers' post.

It will be interesting to see what, if any, belief system is required to work at the Ark Encounter.  And rest assured that if there are faith requirements, AiG and the Ark Encounter will find themselves in another heated debate about the separation of church and state.  And if there are no faith requirements, then AiG will have found themselves in an unprecedented compromise, when non-compromise is at the core of what they do and who they are. 

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