Friday, 1 July 2011
SCOOCH OVER ROB FORD -- TORONTO PRIDE HAS A NEW BOOGIEMAN, AND SHE'S A DYKE!
(July 1) Leave it to the current incarnation of Maclean's magazine to make waves: Canada's national news magazine this week published a very conservative op-ed (headlined "So Rob Ford doesn’t like the gay pride parade? So what?") that supports the Toronto mayor's controversial decision not to attend his city's June 27 Gay Pride flag-raising ceremony ceremony at city hall, or Hogtown's upcoming July 3 parade.
The writer of this piece, Emma Teital, is a dyke, so she should damn well know better when she writes, "If Pride’s mandate is to host an epic party, then it should never change; but if its purpose is to advance gay rights—as many anti-Ford activists maintain—then perhaps it’s time for Pride to evolve with the rights it celebrates. Because until the parade looks more like an affirmation of same-sex freedoms than sex itself, important people will seem justified skipping town."
As one of my friends astutely noted on Facebook, "Well Jesus Christ on a bicycle! Someone needs to remind Miss Dyke that sexual orientation isn't about her right to put on overalls and hit up a fancy dance club - it's about people's right to HAVE SEX. Sheesh."
Toronto's LGBT newspaper Xtra reprinted Teital's op-ed (and I suspect that won't exactly win her any new pals at the parade either). After all, Teital actually mocks Pride when she writes, "Call me old fashioned, but since when did our mayor’s civic duties include being hosed down with super soakers by men in diamond-studded cod pieces? Tolerance is a two-way street. If you want the socially conservative mayor to shake your hand, put on some pants."
Of course, Mayor Rob Ford was elected to represent all Torontonians, even the gay ones. So let us remind him that Toronto’s Pride parade is the third-largest in the world. Pride Week 2009 drew an estimated one million people to Toronto and contributed $136 million to that city's economy. And when Toronto host's World Pride in 2014, the economic spin-offs of that event will likely exceed $500 million. W
Buy will Rob Ford be too busy too attend World Pride too?