On Tuesday, Liberal science critic Marc Garneau said that believing in evolution is not a job requirement for the science minister.It's not what someone believes that is dangerous for a politician, it's how much that personal belief shapes their perception of public policy. Right now, neither the Conservative Party nor Gary Goodyear have given us any indication that they believe in the scientific process. Rather, they allow their personal impressions of academia in general dictate public policy.
“It is a personal matter. It is a matter of faith.… I don't think it prevents someone from being a good minister,” said the former astronaut, who has been a vocal critic of the government for its cuts to the three granting councils that fund university-based research in Canada.
I don't expect a Minister of Health to understand surgery or pharmaceuticals -- even if she is a doctor -- but I do expect a Minister of Health to take professional advice when setting up policy regarding governance of the medical profession. I expect a broad consultative process to take place.
Today, as in the past, the Conservative government formulates opinion on public policy without even asking the basic questions.