Let's get ready to rumble!

Welcome to this bout for the superheavyweight ridiculousness championship of the world.

In this corner we have the Canadian minister of state for science & technology, Gary Goodyear (who obviously missed his true calling: cartoon race car driver), who refuses to say whether he believes in evolution:

Jim Turk, executive director of the Canadian Association of University Teachers, said he was flabbergasted that the minister would invoke his religion when asked about evolution.

“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.

Mr. Goodyear’s evasive answers on evolution are unlikely to reassure the scientists who are skeptical about him, and they bolster the notion that there is a divide between the minister and the research community.

And in this corner, with a reach much greater than Mr. Goodyear’s, is Pope Benedict, who yesterday said that condoms won’t stop the spread of AIDS in Africa.

“You can’t resolve it with the distribution of condoms,” the Pope told reporters aboard his plane to Yaounde, Cameroon. “On the contrary, it increases the problem.”

While health workers — including some priests and nuns working with people with AIDS — advocate the use of condoms to curb the spread of disease during sex, the Catholic church promotes fidelity within marriage, chastity and abstinence.

More than 22 million people in sub-Saharan Africa have HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, according to estimates from the United Nations. Since the 1980s, roughly 25 million people have died from AIDS.

Come out, touch gloves. Let’s have a clean fight. Against reality.

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