Is Tax Evasion a Christian Value?

The Nashville-based NRB Network, a non-profit television network available on the DIRECTV package, says it’s dedicated to defending biblical truth and “Christian values.” But in light of one of the network’s paid programs, one has to wonder how tax evasion fits into those values they’re preaching.

Last week, in honor of Darwin’s birthday, the network put out a news release saying that its prime time Tuesday night programming is focused on refuting the great naturalist’s theory of evolution and natural selection. It claims to present shows that are “dedicated to quality science and nature programs that educate viewers about the irrefutable evidences supporting scriptural teachings.”

Perusing the lineup of shows promising to enlighten viewers to such tired old canards as Noah’s Ark and the Garden of Eden, I noticed one show, “The Creation Series,” is hosted by Kent “Dr. Dino” Hovind.

I’m not sure, but I don’t think Edgefield, South Carolina’s Federal Correctional Institution is letting its inmates do in-house programming these days. (If it did, I’d bet it would be a far more interesting show.) Since 2006, Hovind has been serving a ten-year prison sentence after being convicted of 58 federal counts, including twelve tax offenses, one count of obstructing federal agents and forty-five counts of structuring cash transactions.

Actually, the Creation Series is a DVD featuring many of Hovind’s classic silliness. (His assertions are so ridiculous that even fellow creationists like Ken Ham tell people not to use his arguments. Q: How did Noah fit all those dinosaurs on the Ark? A: He only brought little baby ones.)

The network, which solicits independent paid programming, states that its mission is “to bring back the good old days when television was wholesome and family-friendly. While we do not produce programs, we are always looking for quality, independently produced content that embraces Christian values.”

Admittedly, watching these shows can be a lot of fun. (I admit to getting a kick out of watching Hovind’s “Evolution is Stupid” every now and then), but these charlatans are making tons of money off these videos while they mislead our children and teach them to distrust science. And Hovind is the worst of the bunch.

In addition to his videos and books, Hovind also runs Dinoland, a theme park in Pensacola, Florida currently closed due to government seizure of assets, according to its web site. I visited the place a couple years ago, just after he was sent to jail, and his son Eric had taken over. It purports to teach creation science, but the place was so cheesy it reminded me a lot of those Jellystone KOA campgrounds with the plywood cutouts of dinosaurs. While I was there, I sat in with a group of little kids, who were shown a video defending the biblical account of Genesis as life’s blueprint. Afterward, the boys and girls were asked questions like, “How old is the Earth?” I remember one little girl with a pony tail raised her hand and answered, “6,000 years?” She was told she was correct and given a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup. This continued on for a while, each boy or girl getting candy for their “correct” answers, as their parents smiled proudly at them.

The man leading the class told the kids that they were very smart, but they had to remember their lessons. Because someday, you’re going to be in science class, he said, and “your teacher’s going to lie to you.”

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