Is Answers in Genesis being punished because they refuse to hire non-Christians or even Christians who aren't Young Earth Creationists?
Here is AIG's reasoning behind their filingKentucky sued over lost tax incentive for Noah's Ark park
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — The Christian ministry building a Noah's Ark theme park is arguing in a federal lawsuit that Kentucky tourism officials violated the group's First Amendment free speech rights by denying an $18 million tax incentive.
The Answers in Genesis ministry says in the lawsuit filed Thursday that religious beliefs should not bar the group from participating in the tax incentive plan.
and here's another take on the subjectMark Looy is chief communications officer and co-founder of Answers in Genesis and the Ark Encounter.
In addition to being forced to file a lawsuit against the state of Kentucky to protect religious freedom at the Ark Encounter, it has become necessary at Answers in Genesis to dispel a number of myths related to the construction of our Ark in Northern Kentucky. Sometimes the battle in the court of public opinion is as important as the one in the court itself.
In court, we look forward to showing why AiG has the right to hire people at the Ark who agree with our core beliefs – allowed for religious groups by both federal and state law – and that we also possess the right to share our religious beliefs with visitors who will voluntarily visit our biblical theme park.
Is denying the tax incentives to AIG to be seen as "Christian persecution"?Answers in Genesis, an evangelical Christian organization that believes in the literal Creation story in the Bible, wants to build a major theme park in northern Kentucky, complete with a “life-size Noah’s Ark” and other features, to tell their side of the story.
That is absolutely their right. However, AiG is also demanding that the state of Kentucky cough up $18 million in tax incentives to help finance its “Ark Encounter” project, and that’s where the trouble starts. In December, Kentucky announced that it was rejecting AiG’s application for tax incentives, and AiG announced this week that it will file suit in federal court to overturn that decision.
Let’s start the debate by pointing out that tax money and tax incentives shouldn’t be used to promote or advance a particular religious faith.<snip>
Treating a religious-themed park differently than a secular-themed park would be illegal discrimination against religion, they claim.
Unlike a church, however, a waterpark, baseball stadium or other secular business is by law forbidden to discriminate in who they hire. . . . Answers in Genesis, however, wants to hire only evangelical Christians, and more specifically only evangelical Christians who are willing to sign a statement that confirms their faith in the literal story of Genesis.