The Answers in Genesis ministry, parent of the Creation Museum, had proposed a few years ago to create an Ark Park theme park, based on Noah's Ark, in central Kentucky.
Gov. Beshear supported the proposal as a good tourism draw for the state. He caught some flack from the left for that position. I think he was entirely in the right.
Now, though, the state Tourism Commission has withdrawn the offer of $18 million in tax incentives from the Ark Park. They say that the sponsors have changed their position. Originally, Answers in Genesis said they would not have a religious test for hiring at the park. Recently, though, they have made clear that they would have a religion test for hiring.
The state's position is clear: tax incentives can't be used to advance a particular religion, nor discriminate on the basis of religion.
Answers in Genesis claims that their religious freedom will be violated if they can't both have a religious test in hiring and get state tax incentives.
I believe the state is, once again, correct in its judgment.
I also had my doubts that the Ark Park could ever succeed, but that is beside the principled point here.
Wednesday, December 10, 2014
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