It may have been built with heavenly intentions, but a judge has ruled that the creationism theme park known as Dinosaur Adventure Land still must obey earthly laws.
Escambia County authorities this week locked up a museum building at the theme park on North Palafox Street in Pensacola after Circuit Judge Michael Allen ruled the owners were in contempt of court.
Owners of the park, which shows how dinosaurs may have roamed the Earth just a few thousand years ago, did not obtain a building permit before constructing the building in 2002. They have argued in and out of court that it violates their “deeply held” religious beliefs, and that the church-run facility does not have to obtain permits.
The judge also fined two church leaders $500 each per day for every day the building is used or occupied. If church officials continue to refuse to comply with local ordinances, the judge may decide that the building can be razed, Allen’s ruling said.
“Scripture also says ‘Render unto Caesar what Caesar demands.’ And right now, Caesar demands a building permit,” County Commission Chairman Mike Whitehead said.
(Hat tip to Rev. Dr. Lenny Flank at the Panda’s Thumb.)
In the past, when he got in trouble for not obtaining a county inspection for a building on his church’s property, he argued that the church was a sort of embassy of God, and therefore not technically part of the United States, hence not subject to US law. His current problems with
Dinosaur Adventure Land
seem to be of a similar sort. He doesn’t want to pay taxes, and has come up with a rationalization for not doing so (as the comment about religious persecution seems to show). I can’t quite make up my mind whether he actually believes his nonsense, or whether he’s just pretending. That is, whether he’s a sincere or insincere con-man.