Home > Social Issues > Christians and taxes > Dr. Kent Hovind: From the Pensacola Jail!

Dr. Kent Hovind: From the Pensacola Jail!

Published Sep 18, 2006

In my recent column dealing with my friend Dr. Kent Hovind who is probably the most effective creation/evolution apologist in America, I compared his problems with some early Americans who opposed British-imposed taxes on the thirteen colonies. While there is no question that both Hancock and Hovind actions were similar in that the were tax-related, they were not the same.

From the Escambia County Jail Dr. Hovind told me on Dec. 10 that he is “not a tax protester”; he simply insists on the Federal Government enforcing the laws as they are written. Some will say that he is trying to pin a nicer label on himself; however, I don’t think so. He told me “The tax laws very clearly give some ‘exceptions’; and some ‘exemptions’ for certain individuals and certain ministries, including 508 (c) (1) (a) church ministries.” He told me “I have corresponded with the IRS on numerous occasions asking them exactly what laws apply to 508 (c) (1) (a).  However, they never responded to any of my letters. The agents themselves testified that they did not ever respond to any of my letters.”

That is astounding and outrageous! Repeatedly he sought clarification and received no help! Do IRS officials think they have no obligation to correspond with lowly peons who pay their salaries? Is this arrogance, defiance, or obstinacy?  Or all three? This fact is not known by Kent’s critics. Some critics are so filled with loathing and hate that it will make no difference. They are very pleased to see a creationist in jail whether he deserves it or not! Yet, many Christians take the same position!

So the Hovind case involves  a taxpayer who disagrees with Federal authorities (not a Federal crime) and requests clarification of those laws. And it should be added that many attorneys and tax experts agree with Hovind! So, why didn’t the government answer his questions and why didn’t the trial judge speak to the exceptions in the code?

Most Americans have an innate sense of fairness, and don’t like seeing an ordinary citizen mistreated, especially when some rapists and killers walk away with probation!

Furthermore, he told me that he never boasted about beating the tax system. Then either David Gibbs was wrong because that is what the papers reported or maybe the news accounts were wrong. Even if he did boast about beating the system, that isn’t a crime in itself. It is not a Federal offence to boast, belittle, or even beat tax laws (as long as beating the laws is done legally by use of legitimate tax shelters, trusts, etc. I have heard Kent say two or three times that he pays all taxes that he owes. He does not recommend tax protesting.

Kent told me that he “believes that everyone should obey the tax laws—including the government.” Do Gibbs, Horton, and Kent’s other critics see anything wrong with that statement? Why not hold the feet of Government officials to the fire? Haven’t they been aloof, arbitrary, and arrogant long enough? Why not chain them down with the laws they are supposed to obey? Or is it now a one-way street where only citizens are held accountable?
It is interesting that in Assistant U.S. Attorney Michelle Heldmyer’s closing argument, she said, “Nobody likes to pay taxes, but we do because it’s the law, and he is not above the law.” I want to remind that attorney that Federal officials are also required to obey the laws! Too often, government officials, in a desire to put another notch on their gun will deliberately skew the facts, lie, manufacture “evidence,” misquote an innocent victim, etc. since after all, “he is obviously guilty.” While we don’t have any evidence that happened with Kent’s trial, it has happened many times.

Most Americans have an innate sense of fairness, and don’t like seeing an ordinary citizen mistreated, especially when some rapists and killers walk away with probation! Surely if violent felons can walk free with probation then it is only reasonable that Kent receive the same consideration. Just last week, a black entertainer was charged with tax fraud—12 million dollars, yet he is still free on bail! Kent is in jail. It is also interesting to note that the entertainer still has his passport and is free to travel. It is such imbalance and unfairness that make so many American citizens critical of the judicial system.

I do not question Hovind’s motives. I do not believe he has ever been motivated by greed. After all, for many years he has permitted people to duplicate his videos and pass them on to other people! Obviously, avarice is not part of his nature.

He did not try to hide what he was doing about taxes. I understand, in tax matters, intent is very important and while no person on earth can always ascertain another person’s heart, I am as certain as possible that Kent is genuine.

Assuming he is correct about the IRS code, I think he was unwise to risk his and his wife’s freedom as well as his ministry. However, there is a possibility he will be considered a hero in a few years for standing for proper enforcement of laws. Some of the very people who are critical of Dr. Hovind think Henry David Thoreau was a highly principled man. Thoreau, in 1846, was arrested in Massachusetts  and spend some time in jail for refusing to pay a poll tax. His friend Ralph Waldo Emerson visited him, and peered through the bars, and asked, “Henry, what are you doing in there?” Thoreau replied: “Waldo, what are you doing out there?” I wonder if Kent feels that way? Maybe in a few years some of us on the outside today may realize that we should have been on the inside with him.

Thoreau took a stand against slavery and what he considered an unjust war with Mexico. He wrote, “Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also a prison.” Maybe, just maybe some of us should be on the inside looking out rather on the outside looking in.
One thing is sure: State and Federal officials had better understand that they are not above the law and must start enforcing laws equally. Moreover, they should be more concerned with what is right rather than what is legal. “Right” never changes while man-made laws are in constant flux.

Fair minded citizens are getting weary of seeing celebrities walk free or getting a slap on the wrist while Christians are punished with glee, often when there is no guilt!

Yes, Lady Justice is blind but it is outrageous that she is also bigoted.

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Comments

28 comment(s) on this page. Add your own comment below.

Jim Crawford
Apr 1, 2008 9:09pm [ 1 ]

I agree with Dr. Kent Hovind but our money is the Lords. I’ll pay whatever the taxes may be as long as there is food on the table. I’ll pray for him and his family. I love his ministry, it sparked an interest in me to debate. …greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world. Amen.

Timothy Wylde
Jul 1, 2008 11:22pm [ 2 ]

Dr. Kent Hovind is a good man. His creation science group is one of the best things I’ve seen in the Creation Evolution debate and one of the best things I’ve seen since I became a Christian. I’ve talked to him on his private cell phone many times and he was always happy to talk and help if he could. He would even call me from airports as he was traveling to answer my questions!

I hope and pray he will be free soon, and with a clear record. GOD Bless him.

~Tim

Trudy
Oct 6, 2008 10:38pm [ 3 ]

Amen Brother,

There is no justice in injustice, especially the justice from the heathen who the Lord hates. You let your Light shine and they will do everything to put it out. The American people know if you have money you can get away with anything. The only way to beat the system is to become part of it. The only way to become a winner in this country is to be a loser. The only way the IRS helps you is out of your money, home, business, etc. But for me and my house we will serve the Lord! We are praying for Brother Hovind and now that we found you, you also, amen!. God bless.

Lee
Nov 5, 2008 7:18pm [ 4 ]

Jesus said in the last days you will be persecuted for my names sake…….The Devil has been looking for a way to get Kent for a long time!! Rejoice in your persecution, though this is hard I know, but I say again ….REJOICE!! God bless you Mr. Hovind, you are still an inspiration to us ALL! We love you, and will keep praying for you always, again, God bless you,

Lee, “a saved fan”

diane white
Dec 3, 2008 4:09pm [ 5 ]

My son and I had so many wonderful hours watching Dr. Hovind. We miss the broadcast but were grateful for the time we had together watching it. May God bless and free Dr. Hovind.

Diane

Dean McClain
Feb 13, 2009 9:46am [ 6 ]

Excellent article Brother Boys!
Have we forgotten John Bunyan was jailed for refusing to obtain a license to preach?
Maybe more of us should have been willing to go to jail and now we might still be a Republic and not the UnfaithfulSocialisticAtheists that we are now!

Norm Card
Feb 19, 2009 1:16am [ 7 ]

I like Mr. Hovind. He needs to be released. I may not agree with him, but he is interesting and makes us think.

Perry
Feb 27, 2009 12:41am [ 8 ]

Dr. Hovind, we continue to pray for you, and with you. The US system is maybe not as good as it likes to think, seems like the “bullying” starts in grade school, and the only thing that changes over time are the tactics. Not that any other country has anything to blow about!

Isn’t it kind of “funny” how the mightiest (many around the world would say the most arrogant) seems to have fallen these days. I take no pleasure in watching the current US troubles, but I must say, I feel no surprise either. When your “system” continues to persecute the righteous, don’t you think that the “system” - meaning the people - will eventually have to pay?

I’m just sayin’ …
I truly do pray for your country.
I also think that HE can’t be long now!

(from a Canadian reader)

Mar 18, 2009 4:57pm [ 9 ]

Well You can not fight the government and those who makes and enforce the laws. You will always lose and end up behind bars. All Christians are punished one way or another. Remember Satan has this world right now or why did he say to Jesus, all these worlds are mine and Jesus did not rebuke that statement. Kent is one who the Devil needed to silence because he was setting people on the right path.

Jim Bianchi
Apr 2, 2009 1:36pm [ 10 ]

I am embarrassed by our governments duplicity. The “God Bless America” crowd is in a dream world. I know America’s history is glorious, but our romance for the days long gone have put us asleep I’m afraid.

I am also ashamed that the independent Baptist have not made their voices heard about Dr. Hovind unjust arrest. We need more “John the Baptist” types like Dr. Hovind today.

Eric Drexil Holland
May 7, 2009 7:25pm [ 11 ]

If you don’t agree with the law, it is possible to have it changed. There is an election every couple of years. Start a petition. Declare a fast and call for the people to do the same. Doing what you feel best is a dangerous business when it comes to business. Doing an all cash business, so as not to fall under the watchful eye of the IRS, is a dangerous business. If you feel God has called you to do so: do so. James 3:1 tells us to not expect easy judgment. Did anyone expect a different outcome? If you are not sure of the law, ask. Ask a tax preparer, NOT someone who makes a living teaching people how not to pay taxes. Does H&R Block not have a branch in Pensacola?

Scott Paul
May 7, 2009 11:28pm [ 12 ]

Brother Hovind:

May our Lord Jesus uphold, refresh, revive and continue to use you… oh, and may God send angels to open the doors soon too!

I have never seen a man so ill spoken of, slandered, ridiculed, and had his character belittled. You must be doing something right!!! My mother and I have watched all your videos and cannot say enough to express our support and gratitude. We hold you up often before the Lord in prayer, keep your chin up, many are on your side, sir.

Yours in Christ,

Scott Paul and mother Joy Adams
MARANATHA

Glen Bayly
May 15, 2009 7:40pm [ 13 ]

If you are doing nothing illegal, you don’t have to hide it. Those who do evil do it in the dark so as not to get caught. Operating on a cash basis to avoid the IRS certainly seems to indicate an intention to hide something. If this is what happened then Kent’s continuing stubbornness is a stain on his witness and on the credibility of his creation teachings. I believe in the God who created the heavens and earth in six days and all that is in them and our Savior from the penalty and power of sin, Jesus Christ.

We are sometimes our own worst enemies.

Patty
May 26, 2009 10:38pm [ 14 ]

I really find fascinating watching (on you tube) Hovind debate the evolutionists — fascinating!! Hovind always comes across as logical and the evolutionist as illogical and their arguments ridiculous. I look forward to watching future debates.

Sherryl
May 27, 2009 4:03pm [ 15 ]

A very young boy in my childcare would watch Dr. Hovind while the other children slept. He was already brilliant with science from 3 years old on, but was also already indoctrinated with evolution from stories, books and school. He loved watching Kent Hovind and I would sit and silently pray for him and his family while I watched him soak it all in from the videos. The Lord opened a door wide for this boy’s mother to accept Jesus Christ. She no longer drinks and through another miracle can afford to send this boy and his sister to a private Christian school-where they teach creation of course!

God is faithful! I pray for Dr. Hovind and his family. I hope he can somehow hear this testimony and be encouraged during this difficult time.

Chris De Wet
Aug 26, 2009 8:14am [ 16 ]

Just before Dr. Hovind was arrested, he was to come to SA. I had the privileged of having to interview geologists, soil science specialists, archeologists, and many more scientists to engender debates with Kent Hovind.

Most of the interviews were extremely disappointing in that most of the “scientists” were not willing to conduct debates with Kent Hovind. What was extremely fascinating was their own reasoning amongst each other concerning the reasons to debate – then not to debate, many times opposing themselves on the very topic they originally wanted to debate him in, then deciding otherwise due to opposing viewpoints among themselves.

I do pray for Dr. Hovind and trust that the Lord will give us the same opportunity to minister to such a large “audience” as he has done.

Perry. . . again
Oct 28, 2009 2:57pm [ 17 ]

Hmm…

I cannot help wondering, where is Mr. Graham on this? Where is Mr. Schuller, any of them, on this? Where is Mr. Osteen on this? Even Oprah, who professes to be a Christian (while espousing Eckart Tolle?), where are you? I could go on of course, but the more I think about it, the sadder (and angrier) I get.

God gave you people celebrity, USE IT!

Patrick
Dec 9, 2009 1:29pm [ 18 ]

He broke the law and thus deserves to do his time. Just because he’s a Christian doesn’t exclude him from punishment.

edward duff
Dec 28, 2009 4:06pm [ 19 ]

I have just watched several of the Kent Hovind videos on the internet, (they are full of truth). I applaud him for taking his stand against the evolutionists (they will pay for their teaching). May GOD bless him and use this period of time in Kent’s life to His glory.

andy
Apr 13, 2010 12:39pm [ 20 ]

Kent Hovind should be seen as an American hero and the Tea Party movement should praise him.

Rebekah
May 21, 2010 11:41pm [ 21 ]

I’ll keep you in prayer Mr. Hovind, as well as the well-being of your family. God Bless and don’t give up.

Rod
Jun 16, 2010 2:26pm [ 22 ]

Dr Hovind, I have just received and finished watching your DVD’s, my friends an I found them to be very interesting, putting many things into perspective for me, you have definitely struck a nerve with your enemies, intrigued and converted many who want to understand the truth between evolution and creation, I totally believe God is our creator, God bless you.

Sandra Lira
Jun 20, 2010 12:37am [ 23 ]

I can not believe that only last night I found out about all of this. June 18, 2010. I was very shocked and the enemy told me “See there is NO God after all”. I rebuked him and said your going to burn, your going to burn, satan your going to burn! BURN! BUUURNNN!!! Praise God we have authority over him. I pray Father for my brother Kent Hovind Lord. Because we have good favor with you Lord you will protect him and his family, Mrs. Hovind, and you will give him an early release. That he will come thru this with a ministry larger than before and that many will come to believe in You through brother Hovind, God. Come to know you are the truth and the life. Father protect him and my own family and our lives. God give us the gates of our enemies. Thank you Lord for seeing to this and that we touch and agree according to Matt. 18:19. Thank you for increasing us and using us. Lord thank you what satan meant thru man for evil you will turn around for good. Thank you Lord and this is so. No plague will come close to our dwelling for you are our God and under the shadow of YOUR wings will we trust. You are are shield and buckler. No weapon formed against us shall prosper and you will give us and ours deliverance from every courtroom lie according to Is.54. Thank you Father. I love you. Sandy

Patrick Nolan
Jul 31, 2010 7:35pm [ 24 ]

Mr. Hovind is doing something right, true and just.. If he speaks up long enough Satan will come for him, and he has (the IRS). Throughout history righteous men have been falsely accused and hung out to dry, as is the case here, while Dr. Hovind is in jail he can give a tremendous amount of knowledge to the inmates there, as I am sure he is….Dr. Hovind should be running for congress and eventually the White House… but congress and this (fake) Democracy WE have will never allow it…the fact that he is in prison is proof of his authenticity….

You, Dr.Hovind, inspire me with every speech and debate you win. My prayers are with you and if there is anything a poor country boy can do…. you have but to ask. Please continue to drag the half-witted evolutionist religion through the mud, the more and more they do this sort of injustice, the more people slip out of their communist grip. They have no idea that they are helping you…do they? Eric is doing a wonderful job…..God be with you and your family during this time of need….

masoud
Oct 19, 2010 4:41pm [ 25 ]

I’ll keep you in prayer Mr. Hovind, and your family. We need you. Keep yourself healthy and sharp. Many more debates to come.

Soul
Dec 15, 2010 2:31pm [ 26 ]

I just discovered Kent Hovind’s videos yesterday and was astounded by his intellect. I have been through the university curriculum and have never seen anyone who even comes close to the degree of Godly wisdom demonstrated by this man. Clearly, God deserves the credit for this; and Kent, your reward awaits you for being a faithful servant of the Lord Jesus Christ. (You scared Satan to “death”.) Philippians 1:28 explains why you are in jail. It’s because you are righteous! Praise God!

Gary Powell
Jan 27, 2011 11:31am [ 27 ]

Kent Hovind has been a faithful witness before his incarceration, and no doubt is one during his incarceration. From what I have read he has continued to share Christ in prison… as did the Apostle Paul. God has prepared and maybe even raised up Kent, for such a time as this. We must not complain, brothers and sisters, but be faithful in our prayers and support. Remember what satan meant for evil, God has meant for good. In this world, we will have tribulation, the Lord has promised… and “all those who live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” the scripture sayeth… so we should not be surprised… in fact, if we are not being persecuted… maybe WE should ask ourselves, me included, “am I living a godly life in Christ?” Carry on my brother… remember Philippians and all of Paul’s “prison epistles”.

Dennis
Mar 1, 2011 4:29pm [ 28 ]

My wife and I just learned about Mr. Hovind and what has happened to him and his wife, and our prayers go out to them both. To Kent I say this, Jesus Christ is our Creator Redeemer and has all control, so no worries. We love you Brother, have faith in Jesus Christ! We claim in the name of Jesus Christ for a early release of Brother Kent Hovind so he can get back to his family and rebuke the lies that have been said about him, in Jesus Christ our Creator Redeemer’s name we pray. So be it!

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