Rob Ford, as a candidate and now as mayor, has always implored the people of Toronto to call his ubiquitous cell phone to express their concerns about city issues. At the New Year’s Day levee that came only weeks into his office term, the Toronto Star’s Amy Dempsey reported that the mayor had a repeated refrain for anyone who visited him with a problem or question: “Call me. Just call me.”
Representing Xtra!, reporter Andrea Houston had a problem of her own. Despite being only a few short weeks away from the kick-off to the Pride festivities, the Mayor has not issued the traditional proclamation.
So Houston called the mayor:
When Xtra called Ford’s cellphone June 7 to ask if he will read the proclamation and raise the rainbow flag, he said, “You have the wrong number” and promptly hung up.
To be fair, the idea that the mayor of a city of more than two million people could manage issues personally via cell phone was never realistic. Still, though, if Ford isn’t responding to every phone call he gets, he likely should stop making blanket references to the people who call him whenever he speaks about an issue he supports.
By the way, Ford has still not committed to marching in the Pride parade. Since June Rowlands, who never marched, every subsequent Toronto mayor has made an appearance in the parade.