We’re curious to see how this one plays out in the polls: today, the mayor’s office announced that Rob Ford won’t be marching in this year’s Pride Parade. For more than a decade, the city’s mayors have appeared in the annual event—Barbara Hall, Mel Lastman and David Miller all marched—but apparently Ford has other plans that weekend (turns out he leaves town on the gayest day of the year, every year). Of course, given Ford’s previous relationship with Pride, none of this should really come as a surprise.
According to the Toronto Star, Ford will be at the family cottage instead of standing alongside Toronto’s gay community on July 3:
“I’m going up north, no. I’ll be up at the cottage,” he said.
“You know what? It’s been a tradition with my family going back. We’ve been in Huntsville for the past 30 (years), as long as I remember, since I’m a little boy. We always used to go up north to our cottage and I’m carrying on the tradition that my father had.
“Last year I was there (at the cottage) during the campaign. We’re there every year and we’re going to continue there.”
We suspect the Ford family probably has one of those cottages that explodes unless it’s used the same weekend, every year, forever and always (sort of like the bus in Speed, except with deck chairs). But even if Ford didn’t already have a, let’s say, touchy relationship with Toronto’s gay community, it’s difficult to imagine him marching comfortably in any downtown parade. That said, this is a major event in the city, and even Ford’s friendliest allies in the press—namely, the Toronto Sun’s Sue-Ann Levy—are urging him to march, and we’re pretty sure she won’t be the only one disappointed with his decision.