Someone explain Kent Hovind

This question is directed towards people familiar with Kent Hovind ,the famous anti-evolution evangelist. (currently in jail btw)

Have just been watching his “lectures” and debates. This man is obviously not stupid and seemingly seem to be mentally intact.

My mind just boggles of his outrageous beliefs that is just against everything we know from science.

How do you explain someone like him? Does he really believe this stuff?
How is he not crazy?

I cant get my head around this. This man is a PUZZLE!!

Hovind is a liar, a fraud, and a cheat. Those are not just his crimes, that’s the sort of person he is. Read some of the excerpts from his trials, sometime, to get a handle on his character.

I think this is necessarily speculative and thus not really suitable for General Questions. Moving to GD.

General Questions Moderator

Granted he is a lier and a cheat. His PHd was nothing less than shady for example.

Im just trying to get a grip what would motivate someone like him

Could it only be money? In some weird way I get a feeling he actually could believe what he claims to believe.

We are talking (beside earth being 6000 years) belief in dragons, Chip installed by the government, Noahs Ark, An ice crust over the earth causing the flood etc etc ad nauseam…

How do you actually believe this without being crazy?

Money and being special are his motivations.

He’s not all that bright, either… the most common answer he gives when criticized on any particular point is “you can’t prove it didn’t happen that way.”
ETA: Lots of people believe some, much, or all of those things. They’re not crazy, just uninformed or willfully ignorant.

Only if by “obviously” you mean “ignoring the evidence that he is stupid and isn’t mentally intact”.

Personally, I’d say if he believes half the stuff Wikipedia says he does, he’s batshit fucking insane.

Some people can contemplate the world as a purely physical phenomenon and others simply cannot, no way. Kent Hovind is one of the latter: he both “believes” what he says and at the same time lives in continual fear that he is lying to himself. There have been many articulate espousers of what you or I consider ‘crap.’ You can’t call him “crazy” because, as I said, half the world thinks along this spectrum.

I’m not saying the materialists are saner, btw. I fall on the materialist/rationalist spectrum myself, though.

What is he in jail for?

Half a million dollar’s worth of tax evasion. Basically he thought he didn’t have to pay any taxes at all, ever. The courts, obviously, thought otherwise.

His dissertation was hilarious, though.'s_doctoral_dissertation

Same thing that motivates Jack Chick?

He even lies about leaving floaters in the toilet backstage!

The key to understanding Hovind, and Young Earth Creationists in general, can be found on the first page of his dissertation. What’s at issue is inerrancy. Either Genesis is literal truth or the whole Bible falls. Of course, many Christians see things otherwise. Genesis can be parable or symbolic and the rest perfectly true. But that’s not Hovind’s view nor that of the YECs.

Tax fraud.

He owned a ‘dinoland’ and didn’t pay the government the taxes for his employees. His reasoning, IIRC, was that they were ‘church employees’ or something.

During his trial, I believe he said something like ‘if the government just wants the money I can give it to them’ or something like that.

He has rants against taxes, about Timothy McVey being set up, and against public school.

His dissertation is an embarrassment (it was released recently) and he consistently misquotes and/or misunderstands scientific journal articles to provide ‘support’ for his position.

He’s popular because his style of “debate” is the Gish Gallop - throw as much poop out there as possible and your opponent can only clean up a tenth of it by the time the debate is done.

It looks good to a niave crowd, but to anyone who knows anything about the issues it’s really apparent that the man is a huckster.

He’s an idiot that somehow appeals to other idiots.

I call it The Sarah Palin Effect.

My vote goes for Con artist!

To a simple minded person, he may actually sound extremely intelligent, but when you actually listen to his arguments you will find they are preposterous. As for his education, that degree he supposedly earned, well it came from a diploma mill. The montlhy fee for the school, 25$ a month. Gimme a break! He is a con artist plain and simple, and he seems to be a decent one at that, pulling in 2million a year.

Yes, jail is most assuredly an excellent place for him. I actually feel bad for the fellow inmates.

It’s not too often that you see a question which can be answered by the OP’s own username.

I’ve read the first ten pages of his dissertation so far, and it’s alternating between hysterical and frightening in about equal parts. Explain the man? He’s a young earth creationist: an idiot and a conman.

Hear hear, he is a creationist and a conman. No doubt
But could he actually believe in the things he is claiming, I mean could he reeeeally??

What drives a mind like his? If he was only looking for money, there are scams that are
100 times easier to pull.
I for one actually believes what he claims to believe. There is just no way someone would put that amount of work into something without actually believing it…
If that is true then he wouldnt be a complete huckster but somewhat “sincere”, from his point of view.

So what that does leave us with: Complete and utter craziness, bordering on psychosis?

I found it more silly than frightening. It’s written so poorly that if you’d taken his name off of it I would have thought it was done by a religiously home-schooled 8th grader.