Time hasn’t forgotten Toronto, but Toronto would like to forget time.
Under its new mayor, Rob Ford, the city is turning back the clock to the good old days of the chief magistrate’s imagining. Never one to be distracted by reality, Ford believes that we can ignore — no, undo — the changes that have redrawn the face of Toronto during recent years and return to some white-bread suburban utopia that never existed.The rest here
No one should underestimate the power of illusion, of course, but just months after Ford took office, the credibility gap between what we know and what he says has been stretched to the breaking point.
In Rob Ford’s Toronto there is no need for public heath nurses. There are no poor people, no gays, no immigrants, no cyclists, no need for housing and nothing the market can’t fix.
That this is nonsense goes without saying. While Ford’s hordes cheer him on in the most unseemly manner, cutting off their collective nose to spite their collective face, they have little to offer aside from insults and jeers. Not believing themselves a part of Toronto, they are content to watch as it is dismantled by the mayor.
Though it has quickly become predictable, the glee with which Ford’s hordes greet his every bêtise still disturbs. The sort of casual civic destructiveness Ford has legitimized in Toronto reminds one of what happened recently in Vancouver. Toronto hasn’t experienced riots — at least not since police went on a rampage during the G20 summit last summer — but both events demonstrate the human capacity for and love of destruction for its own sake.