Lucky Florida

Have you Floridians been pining away for a museum like Ken Ham’s? OK, no, you haven’t, not in the slightest, but you’re getting one anyway. The Gospel Fossil man is coming to lie to your children!

“To find a fossil, I’m finding, often times, especially if it’s a dinosaur fossil, a victim of God’s judgment,” Baird said. “And I may be the first one to ever see the remains since it was buried in the flood.”

Baird, also known as the Gospel Fossil man, said he came up with the idea of “Gospel fossils” 14 years ago after watching Jurassic Park.

“I was tired of the world getting all the attention and Satan getting all the attention from these creatures,” Baird said of the dinosaurs.

Referencing Genesis 1, Baird said God created the dinosaurs on the sixth day with the other beasts of the field. Moving on to Job 40, Baird used the description of the “behemoth” to show that this huge animal was a dinosaur.

“If we just simply let God speak…God is describing [the dinosaur] to Job, which is several hundred years after the flood, which tells us the dinosaurs had to go on the ark and come off the ark and were living hundreds of years at least after the flood,” Baird said.

If we just simply let the evidence speak … it’s shouting that Tom Baird is an asshat. The bible is a hodge-podge of a book full of superstition and mythology; it’s silly to use it as a guide for understanding the natural world as Baird is doing. What he calls Satan, somewhat more sensible Christians call the Creation — and alas, those sensible Christians are hampered by the fact that the “Creation” is busily telling us that it wasn’t created at all, that the Bible is false, and that the foundation of their faith is bogus. I don’t think we’ll hear much from them protesting this absurdity that has just taken up residence in their neighborhood.

Baird recently found a permanent home for Noah’s Park, which consists of nearly $100,000 worth of fossils——everything from dinosaur eggs to dinosaur excrement——several displays, and a planetarium, at the Middle Florida Baptist Assembly grounds.

The assembly grounds, located near Branford at Pickett Lake in Lafayette County, is a non-profit organization privately owned by seven Southern Baptist associations: Beulah, Harmony, Lafayette, Middle Florida, Santa Fe River, Suwannee, and Taylor.

I suspect that what Baird has is an incoherent collection of random fossils of dubious provenance—that’s what the pictures show, with duck-billed dinosaurs tangled up with sabre-toothed tigers, and trilobites jumbled on a table with 10,000 year old fossil fish—picked up at rock shops and uninformed by knowledge and lacking any organizing principle, other than the false hypothesis that the dinosaurs were all killed in a flood 4,000 years ago. That is not a museum; it’s calculated disinformation mustered by a willfully confused ideologue (he has a Bachelor’s degree in Religious Education from Trinity Bible College in Florida!) designed to perpetuate ignorance in the public. Let’s call it an anti-museum. Let’s call it creationist superstition. Let’s call Tom Baird a foolish clown and arrogant ignoramus.

(via Florida Citizens for Science)


  1. carl says

    Well, I live in the Daytona Beach area and thankfully this hasn’t made here. My 6 year old daughter is smart enough to see through crap like this. If they come to the Central Florida area, I think there would be plenty of us “leftist liberals” to show them the way out of town.

    WTF is up with satan getting credit for dinosuars??

  2. jimmiraybob says

    Money Qoute:

    “People who may not go to church … still get some biblical influence … as they come to look at the telescope or come to a planetarium presentation or come breezing through the museum,” Baird said. “And that’s what it’s all about.”

    Yes, lies and deceit is what it’s all about. There are laws against selling appliances this way but I guess selling ignorance is OK using whatever methods work best as long as it’s in Jesus’ name.

  3. Rey Fox says

    “Baird, also known as the Gospel Fossil man, said he came up with the idea of “Gospel fossils” 14 years ago after watching Jurassic Park.

    This guy must be a hit at parties.

    “I was tired of the world getting all the attention and Satan getting all the attention from these creatures,” Baird said of the dinosaurs.”

    Stupid world, thinks it rules over everything within its boundaries. I agree, it’s high time someone took the world down a peg, you know?

  4. Coragyps says

    Not just dinosaur excrement – he seems to have a lot from Bos tauri, too.

  5. Jenbug says


    I have HAD it with this Sh*t! People used to dump on me and laugh at me for living in the ‘hanging chad’ state, and before that it was old people and alligators and ‘America’s Wang,’ and I defended it. I said it wasn’t that bad and had a wide range of climate and wildlife diversity. And it didn’t really smell like boiled eggs.


    I’m outta here.

  6. says

    My biggest beef with this crap is their target audience: kids. There’s not one heck of a lot that can be done about the homeschooled and private schools, but hoping to lure in public schools is a blood boiler. If I were a science teacher in that area, I would take my students there and point out everything wrong with the place and then have the whole class laugh Baird right out of the building.

  7. matthew says

    Now I’m REALLY glad that the hurricanes of the year before last chased me out of that damn state for good.

  8. says

    I think I’d much rather embrace Evil’s definition of creation from the movie Time Bandits:
    “If I were creating the world I wouldn’t mess about with butterflies and daffodils. I would have started with lasers, eight o’clock, Day One!”

    Hey! It’s Friday in Florida. Laugh!

  9. says

    “I was tired of the world getting all the attention and Satan getting all the attention from these creatures,” Baird said of the dinosaurs.

    There’s some really weird sentence structure going on here. It’s almost like parallelism — X getting all the Y and X’ getting all the Y’ — but it sounds like Baird changed what he was saying in the middle of a sentence. Maybe he meant to say, “I was tired of the world paying all the [that?] attention to these creatures,” and flubbed midway through.

    What he calls Satan, somewhat more sensible Christians call the Creation — and alas, those sensible Christians are hampered by the fact that the “Creation” is busily telling us that it wasn’t created at all, that the Bible is false, and that the foundation of their faith is bogus. I don’t think we’ll hear much from them protesting this absurdity that has just taken up residence in their neighborhood.

    Come on, people. PZ’s made a prediction, now falsify it. . .

    /me does not hold breath

  10. jeffw says

    I hope at least some scientific organization has a plan for non-stop ridicule of these bozos. It’s a huge national embarrassment. But then again, so are Bush, Coulter, Falwell, etc. I’d like to blame religion, but I suspect it’s the american people themselves who are ultimately responsible for supporting all this nonsense. Maybe we’re just hopeless idiots getting what we deserve.

  11. J-Dog says

    The poor guy CLEARLY does not how to run a FlintStones Con-Park… the press release fails to mention what per centage of American’s live within a “days drive” of their little tax-write off.

    I think that the “REAL” Dr. Dino should sue his butt back to the Stone Age though for a clear-cut case of Craziness Infringement.

  12. K says

    Brandon, Brandon, Brandon, silly monkey. My homeschooled Atheist child is laughing at the link, and although we’d go to point and laugh, we choose not to give them our money.
    Considering the poor test scores of Florida public schools, you don’t have to worry about the homeschooled kids growing up stupid. Not to worry about the fundy homeschoolers either. We have that atrocity, Holy Land Experience ( AND they offer discounts to homeschoolers all the time but the more broke a homeschooler is, the more pious they are and none of them can ever afford to go, IF they can afford the gas, IF they can get the car from their husband that day.

  13. Nance Confer says

    More for Keith Olberman to tease us about. When will it ever end. . . sigh. . .


  14. says

    OK, OK, you got me there, K. Handing money over to the wackos wouldn’t be a very good idea. If only students could be shown what pure idiocy this is without paying money to support the idiocy …

  15. Leon says

    Another disgrace on our soil. It all boggles the mind.

    Um, one nitpick, PZ–I know megafauna aren’t your specialty, but there’s no such thing as a saber-toothed tiger: they’re saber-toothed cats.

  16. Greg Peterson says

    Blake, “the world” getting attention looks very much like gibberish to people not schooled in the pseudo-gnosticism of “saints” John and Paul, who use the term “world” (from the Greek word from which we get “cosmos”) to mean something like “materialism” (in the sense of physicalism, not rampant consumerism). The enemies John and Paul saw were basically one’s own flesh, the rest of the material world and its systems, and Satan, as against God and spirit. So what I’m saying is, he didn’t misspeak, as far as his worldview goes. It’s just that his worldview is wrong.

  17. Augie says

    If T.-Rex and the Raptors lived with man as some idiots say, alot of us are lucky to be here, it means our ancestors were not a snack for one or the other. These people are preaching pure BS

  18. says

    Greg Peterson:

    Very informative, thank you! Although I thought I was tolerably familiar with fundamentalist locutions, I wasn’t aware of that usage. I wonder how common it is.

    It still sounds odd, though. If I heard someone say, “I got attention from the children,” my first reaction would be to interpret that as the children giving attention to the speaker (“the children paid attention to me”). I wouldn’t easily read “from” as “thanks to” or “on account of”, which is how Baird is using the word:

    “I was tired of the [material] world getting all the attention and Satan getting all the attention [provoked by] these creatures,” Baird said of the dinosaurs.

  19. says

    “Baird recently found a permanent home for Noah’s Park, which consists of nearly $100,000 worth of fossils–—everything from dinosaur eggs to dinosaur excrement”

    From what I could tell from the pictures, most, if not all, of Baird’s “fossils” are merely replicas that are widely available (I would hate to think that he had the original Berlin Archaeopteryx in his collection), and some of them are even offered on Kent Hovind’s webstore. I have little doubt that Baird & friends spent $100,000 to build up a collection, but the vast majority of what I saw on his website could be obtained by anyone with enough church donations, I mean, “hard-earned cash” at their disposal.

  20. Diego says

    Greeeeaaaaat. . . This is exactly what we needed in north Florida. Just frickin’ fantastic. :(

    What I find most ironic is that the wealth of biodiversity and endemism in this part of the country is a treasure trove of information about the deep past and evolutionary history of our biota. Do these people never go outside or do they simply carry their mental screens with them when they do so that they don’t accidentally let reality slip through?

  21. thecdn says

    Another reason for being embarassed to live in Florida? Great. Must work on convincing the wife that cold weather isn’t that bad so we can move back to Canada.

  22. dzd says

    “WTF is up with satan getting credit for dinosuars??”

    Big claws, scary teeth, general baffling appearance = it’s gotta be Satan.

  23. says


    I guess the old USofA must be really screwed up, if you think you have to spend one post after the other exposing the lies of people like Baird and Ham. What’s more worrisome is the fact that you seem to be really concerned about those buffoons.

    Here in Europe, intellectuals like you would never give a damn about such kind of exhibits and even the laymen would never take them seriously. Ham and Baird would be pure laughingstock.

    That you are seriously concerned about the issue just shows how horribly fucked up is scientific education (not to mention common sense) in America. I feel for you.

  24. tsig says

    Hey the cdn

    Don’t move, get active.

    Maybe form a watchdog group to make sure he pays all his taxes and gets all his permits if he builds this “museum”

    With any luck he will “Hovind” himself.

  25. Nomen Nescio says

    the other day my spouse and i were discussing something else entirely, and we came to the conclusion that Florida is the trailer park of the nation.

    mind you, we spent a couple years living in an upper midwestern trailer park. we left because we got sick and tired of the constant soap-opera-like petty drama that was trailer park living. then we started noticing a pattern in all the news reports to come out of Florida…

  26. Greg Peterson says

    Gawd, Blake, you’re right. Still doesn’t make any fricking sense, does it? I mean–I’m standing by how I interpret his use of “world,” because as much as these half-wits go on about physical resurrections, they actually equate material reality with evil pretty readily, and that is how they understand “the world.” But even given that, and being generous in my interpretation of what he said, upon re-reading it, it came up word salad. DISMISSED! As far as our lucky non-American friend goes, yeah. Yeah, we really do have to take this kind of crap on. For decades it was assumed that it was too stupid to continue, and it grew like nightshade. I know it must look reactionary sometimes, but the upside, from experience, is that in the process of learning how to combat the BS, I’ve learned an awful lot. Just a quick recent example: After that moronic mash-up of a duck and crocodile photo that Kirk Cameron used in the Nightline debate, I found myself really interested in feathered dinosaurs. The motivation was pure idiocy, but we can use that idiocy, in our lives and in education, as a spur for some real learning.

  27. Steve_C (Secular Elitist) FCD says

    Wait a second? Satan is a creator now too? What the hell? Dinosaurs are demons?

  28. says

    Remember those school field trips to the museum when you were a kid? Loading onto the buses. Head counts. Soggy peanut butter and jelly sandwiches? Forget all that because the Gospel fossils Portable Dinosaur Museum comes right to your school, organization or house of worship, bringing with it the Biblically based “Scripturescope” approach of examining the scientific evidence of God’s creative genius!

    I wonder how many of Florida’s PUBLIC schools are going to take advantage of this offering? It makes me sick to think about it.

    I am SO glad I’m outta there!

  29. Casey says

    Thank goodness I live in Alachua County, the home of University of Florida. A blue mecca in a sea of red craziness.

  30. dorid says

    That you are seriously concerned about the issue just shows how horribly fucked up is scientific education (not to mention common sense) in America. I feel for you.

    It’s more a common sense issue. Science teachers, parents and students have to FIGHT in court to teach science. District after district is falling to religious superstition or trying to be “politically correct” by allowing “alternate views”. When my kids go to science class I have to ask them what they’ve learned, not just because I want to enhance their education at home, but because I need to weed out some of the silliness they’ve encountered. I find I often have to do this in history as well.

    About a month ago one of my middle schoolers came home and answered “We learned about evolution” I asked if her teacher had mentioned god or creation at all, to which she answered “Yeah, she said she was required by the school board to tell us that some people didn’t believe evolution occured, and that if that’s our religious belief, fine, but that you were going to learn EVOLUTION in her classroom.” Hurray! I’m GLAD, because we HAD lived in Cobb County, GA for a year…

  31. Diego says

    “A blue mecca in a sea of red craziness.”

    Ah, but it’s a decidedly blue and orange mecca, Casey. ;)

    Yeah, it is nice to be in a liberal university town (although I am in that other major Florida college town)

  32. Fred Mim says

    “I was tired of the world getting all the attention.”

    Boy, if that doesn’t sum up Christianity in a nutshell, I don’t know what does.

  33. eewolf says

    If teaching creationism/ID in public science classrooms is illegal (and Dover says it is), then how would it be legal to take your science class to this fake museum? Or have it on school grounds?

    I think this could and should be fought if it occurs. I am somewhat out of range up here in St. Augustine (Saint?, is there no relief from it?). But I would not be happy to hear that public schools were paying this charlatan (or even taking free tours) to poison young minds.

  34. RamblinDude says

    Do you think he’ll build it next to Silver Springs so that he can use it’s ‘blue’ water in the ‘Garden of Eden’ display?

  35. says

    Soggy peanut butter and jelly sandwiches?

    For the gods’ sakes, don’t bring peanut butter there. Next thing you know they’ll have a new exhibit with it disproving evolution.

  36. says

    Oh, and I drive by the Creationist Museum in Glen Rose frequently. Trust me, you aren’t missing much. It is a glorified shack in a hellhole of a town, and on the bad side of it to boot.

  37. MB says


    There is something familiar about the poster in one of their pictures.

    I actually had it on my wall as a kid. And those green, yellow and blue bars at the top? A timeline of when the various dinosaurs lived, in GEOLOGIC time (Triassic, Jurassic, Cretaceous)!

    Either they are hoping no one will read the poster closely, they are betting on the ignorance of their patrons to scientific terminology, or they are just a lazy bunch of frauds. I vote the later.

  38. melior says

    Presentations Available Include:
    – Plate Tectonics

    With Gospel Fossil Man’s dating, the continents must have been fairly racing around since creation rather than drifting. Perhaps only while we are asleep?

  39. says

    From desert cliff and mountaintop we trace the wide design,
    Strike-slip fault and overthrust and syn and anticline. . .
    We gaze upon creation where erosion makes it known,
    And count the countless aeons in the banding of the stone.
    Odd, long-vanished creatures and their tracks & shells are found;
    Where truth has left its sketches on the slate below the ground.
    The patient stone can speak, if we but listen when it talks.
    Humans wrote the Bible; God wrote the rocks.

    — Catherine Faber

  40. lithopithecus says

    you’re getting one anyway…
    the Florida Baptist Witness
    ‘…Gospel Fossil man’s park possible through partnership of associations’
    Published May 17, 2007

    admittedly crude anagram of the authors’ name:
    hillbilly grammar and all!

  41. says

    I wouldn’t be so sure about that, Science Avenger – sneak one of those sandwiches into the museum and let it sit in a baggie for a few days. I guarantee you it’ll show signs of new life.

  42. Don Smith, FCD says


    I believe the standard creationist line is that the continents did all that moving around right after the flood and have been moving at the present rate ever since (or possibly not moving at all).

    It kind of humorous to think of all those marsupials (except the opossum which apparently got on the wrong plate ;-) ) racing from Ararat so they wouldn’t miss the departure of the Australian raft.

    On a more practical side, wouldn’t that movement have caused giant tsunamis that would’ve reflooded the newly drained land?

  43. CalGeorge says

    It’s a law: for every legitimate science museum there have to be 10 fake museums.

    That’s because, for every intelligent person, there are 10 morons and they have to have something to do on the weekend (after they have done watching 25 hours of jaw-droppingly drecky television during the rest of the week).

    Hopefully, there will be McDonalds and lots of other fat food restaurants nearby for them to pig out at before/after they have worn themselves out oohing and ahhing at the amazingly illogical things they will encounter at this museum of colossal stupidity.

    At the end of the visit, they will get in their giant S.U.V.s and return home to their McMansions with their porcine kids, knowing that all’s right with the world, fossilwise and godwise.

  44. Louis says

    These creationist museums contain antiscience gibberish, right? Ok then, I say we go and demonstrate some well established science to them. I’m going to suggest stuff from my own field of chemistry to start with. I think a demonstration of the synthesis and use of high explosives is a good start, and we could couple that to a quick tutorial in the electronic of timing circuits and the physics which underpins the structural decisions builders and civil engineers make. Couple all this to a sociological study on work habits and the demonstration could be at night.

    Oh all right I know we can’t do that, but let’s be honest, the US govt does have a habit of bombing things, and you do have all those guns, is a little very direct action too much to ask?


    P.S. For the hard of thought, I am joking. I am certainly not advocating the destruction of property or the endangerment of lives. This is humour, people. Deal.

  45. Fernando Magyar says


    The only thing you would accomplish with this demonstration is proof that the “Big Bang” obviously must have had a designer, or an explosives expert behind it. Let’s not give these people too many ideas.

  46. Kenneth Mareld says

    That’s just awful. Creationist museums keep popping up like pimples on a teenager. The problem is that like pimples they can go away (shut down because the proprietor went to prison)but they can leave the scars of ignorance for decades.
    I don’t think here are creationist museums here in Washington State. If there are, tell me, I want to go for a tragic laugh.
    I was at Ginkgo State park in the Columbia River gorge last year. I didn’t hike the area. Fifty mile per hour winds are just not conducive to going out and about. The displays in the park center were fascinating. Appalling though was the old biddie telling her twelve year old grand niece that the displays were all ‘Lies of Satan’. I commented while standing next to them how wonderful it was that Washington State could present evidence for evolution in such an engaging way.
    Sadly, the old biddie ran her niece out of the center and drove off. I guess she thought the Devil incarnate (me) was going to take her grand niece. I swear that she tried to turn me into a pillar of salt before they left.
    I wonder if the twelve year old would have been better served if I had kept my mouth shut. She then may have had a opportunity to see the rest of the display. Alas.


  47. jomega says

    I really can’t tell you how impressed i am by the “museum” case containing the store display of “Carnegie Collection” TOY DINOSAURS! Flabbergasted, perhaps. Contemptuous, certainly. But impressed? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

    I also loved the fact that their Amazing Inflatable Planetarium is emblazoned with the signs of the heathen, Evil SATANIC ZODIAC! I could only wonder what the theological justification for that move was, if I could bring myself to care.

    Lately I’ve felt you’re paying rather too much attention to these yahoos –admittedly, they won’t go away if you ignore them, but sadly they aren’t going away anyway– but sometimes shit like this just makes me giggle like a little girl. Thanks for the post!

  48. RamblinDude says

    jomega: I’m not sure I agree with you when you say that “Lately I’ve felt you’re paying rather too much attention to these yahoos”.

    When the President of the United States thinks that ancient Hebrew mythology should be seriously considered as science, and “Creationist museums keep popping up like pimples on a teenager”, (nice one, Ken), then it may be time to make sure that all that bible thumping hasn’t weakened the foundation.

    And check the batteries in the flashlights too, just in case we wake up in the dark ages.

    Wow, I’m on a metaphor roll!

  49. Sampo Rassi says

    #44: OMG, you TOO?

    I had that exact same poster as well, and I’m in zogging Finland! What are the odds?

  50. says

    I just had this blog forwarded to me in an email, and since I’ve actually been to Branford, FL, I just had to share my experiences there.

    First, the fact that any place would be described as “near Branford” shows what a teeny speck of backwoods Florida it must be. The only national businesses in Branford are a Hardee’s and a Dollar General store. The gas station might count too.

    I visited Branford as a college recruiter. In my workshop I asked, “What are your values? What do you believe in?” After a pause, one brave high school senior ventured to offer, “I know I hate A-rabs.” Likewise, while discussing budgeting with the middle schoolers (middle & high school were in the same building), one of the suggested monthly expenses to consider was, “Paying off the Mexicans.”

    Other highlights of my experience with Branford include high school students mispelling the town’s name, and a student telling me he worked at a cafe called “Nails,” which I later learned to be spelled, “Nell’s.”

    In view of these things, I, unfortunately, don’t think the fossil exhibit can really do that much more harm.