They’ve been awarded an $18 million tax break. AiG will, as usual, declare that they weren’t actually given any money directly, but instead got a deal with the state that says they won’t have to pay as much. Because, as we all know, having to pay less of your revenues to cover the costs of infrastructure and maintenance and subsidized transport — you know, like all those roads two thirds of the country will be driving on to get to their over-priced carnie show — isn’t actually a benefit. It’s just what a god-fearing Kentucky ought to do.
But that’s not what they’d like you to avoid bringing up. No, it’s that in their state-subsidized operation, which makes them subject to state and federal hiring laws, they have a peculiar hiring requirement: they demand that all employees swear to abide by their statement of faith. That statement requires that all employees believe:
The only legitimate marriage sanctioned by God is the joining of one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union, as delineated in Scripture. God intends sexual intimacy to only occur between a man and a woman who are married to each other, and has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman. Any form of sexual immorality, such as adultery, fornication, homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, pornography, or any attempt to change one’s gender, or disagreement with one’s biological gender, is sinful and offensive to God.
Oops. They just violated a few equal opportunity laws.
They also insist that:
All human life is sacred and begins at conception (defined as the moment of fertilization). The unborn child is a living human being, created in the image of God, and must be respected and protected both before and after birth. The abortion of an unborn child or the active taking of human life through euthanasia constitutes a violation of the sanctity of human life, and is a crime against God and man.
And of course there are a whole lot of religious requirements that only fit Christians. And not just any Christian: a very narrow, very specific version of Christianity that’s going to include only fundamentalist Protestants with a literalist interpretation of the Bible.
So there will be no Jews, gay men, lesbians, transgender men or women (or even individuals with gender dysphoria), Muslims, pro-choice citizens, Seventh Day Adventists, Scientologists, Catholics, Episcopalians, Buddhists, agnostics, pantheists, feminists, Sikhs, Quakers, or atheists employed at the Creation “Museum”. Also no honest physicists, geologists, or biologists. Karen Armstrong couldn’t get a job there, and neither could Neil deGrasse Tyson or Ken Miller. Me, either…and here I was pinin’ for an opportunity to move to the lovely Cincinnati area and get a prestigious job helping the public learn about science. Hecky darn.
But they don’t want anyone to talk about that. They’re going to nominally claim to follow state and federal guidelines, while somehow, magically, without any discrimination on their part, all the employees working as grounds crew, security, advertising, zip line guides, or accountants will just happen to all be conservative heterosexual attendees of Ken Ham’s favorite local churches.
And that may be a fair description of their applicant pool, since they’re clearly setting up a hostile work environment for anyone who doesn’t conform.