You’re Making Me a Sad Man, Mr. Goodyear

Canada’s science minister, the man at the centre of the controversy over federal funding cuts to researchers, won’t say if he believes in evolution.

“I’m not going to answer that question. I am a Christian, and I don’t think anybody asking a question about my religion is appropriate,” Gary Goodyear, the federal Minister of State for Science and Technology, said in an interview with The Globe and Mail…

…“It is the same as asking the gentleman, ‘Do you believe the world is flat?’ and he doesn’t answer on religious grounds,” said Dr. Alters. “Or gravity, or plate tectonics, or that the Earth goes around the sun.”…“The traditions of science and the reliance on testable and provable knowledge has served us well for several hundred years and have been the basis for most of our advancement. It is inconceivable that a government would have a minister of science that rejects the basis of scientific discovery and traditions,” he said.

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Dave Semeniuk spends hours locked up in his office, thinking about the role the oceans play in controlling global climate, and unique ways of studying it. He'd also like to shamelessly plug his art practice: davidsemeniuk.com

7 Responses to “You’re Making Me a Sad Man, Mr. Goodyear”

  1. Nicholas FitzGerald

    I was just logging on to post the same thing. WHAT?!?!?! I was shocked to read this in the Globe this morning. We like to make fun of America’s backwardness – how could this happen in Canada?!

  2. Jennifer

    That is pretty scary. Actually, just plain bad form overall for a science minister.

    Just because he is Christian doesn’t mean he needs to renounce evolution. In fact in the Dover trial, Protestant, Catholic and a few other denominations were on the side of evolution (and not intelligent design).

    Does this mean he’s a christian fundamentalist at heart? If so, heaven help us…

  3. Dave Semeniuk

    Evolution certainly doesn’t disprove the existence of a god, but it does disprove young-earth creationism. Either the minister is seriously metaphysically confused, or he believes his ancestors were romping about North America on the backs of velociraptors. In either case, it’s a poor state for our country’s science adviser to be in.

  4. Nick W.

    He’s since ‘clarified’ his position, saying he does believe in evolution (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20090317.wevol0317/BNStory/politics/home). Sadly, he also reveals that he doesn’t understand evolution at all:

    “We are evolving every year, every decade. That’s a fact, whether it is to the intensity of the sun, whether it is to, as a chiropractor, walking on cement versus anything else, whether it is running shoes or high heels, of course we are evolving to our environment.”

    This strikes me as a thoroughly Lamarckian view of evolution (though I suppose one could give him the benefit of the doubt, and assume that when he says ‘we’, he’s referring to populations rather than individuals).

  5. Nick W.

    Also, every time I read that he’s a trained chiropractor, I die a little bit inside…

  6. David

    We could create a game out of that, matching common questions with this insane answer:

    – What do you think about the AIDS epidemy in Africa?
    – I’m not going to answer that question. I am a Christian, and I don’t think anybody asking a question about my religion is appropriate.

    – Do you think eating pork is a healthy diet?
    – I’m not going to answer that question. I am a Christian, and I don’t think anybody asking a question about my religion is appropriate.

    – Have you ever anything about parallel universes theories?
    – I’m not going to answer that question. I am a Christian, and I don’t think anybody asking a question about my religion is appropriate.

    – Should the government only fund projects related to commonly accepted theories, or should it also invest in more “crazy and edgy” theories, knowing that this is how Galileo, Copernic and Einstein got started?
    – I’m not going to answer that question. I am a Christian, and I don’t think anybody asking a question about my religion is appropriate.

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