Mississippi State University’s Society for the Advancement of Creation Science — in case you were wondering just how Mississippi the campus could get — hosted a guest lecture yesterday by none other than Creationist Kent Hovind.
That would be the same Kent Hovind whose doctoral thesis from the unaccredited Patriot Bible University opens with the line, “Hello, my name is Kent Hovind.”
As the Southern Poverty Law Center noted, Hovind isn’t just a run-of-the-mill Creationist. He’s also a former felon:
He earned the inmate number for refusing to withhold payroll taxes from his Dinosaur Adventure Land staff, destroying records, mail fraud, filing false documents and threatening his investigators. Kent and his wife Jo were found guilty of their crimes in 2006 and sentenced to 10 years in prison in 2007. The theme park and additional property was also seized.
Hovind was released from prison in 2015. None of the students who invited him seemed to know or care about that — which isn’t really an issue for me. He served his time. And while this is technically taxpayer money being used to sponsor a Creationist, registered student groups have the ability to bring in speakers of their choice if they jump through all the bureaucratic hoops. There’s nothing illegal or ethically problematic going on here.
But maybe they shouldn’t have wasted their time since last night’s event appeared to be a bust. (The video doesn’t embed, however the link to it is right here.) There are a number of empty seats in the front of the auditorium — though the camera admittedly doesn’t pan out or show us the full space — and the end of the talk is met with tepid applause that dies out rather quickly. Then again, based on the backwards way Hovind does math, he probably thinks there were thousands of people in the crowd…
I guess we should be happy that a Creationist couldn’t fill an auditorium in Mississippi? It’s progress in a twisted wacky way.
(Thanks to Bill for the link)