The Toronto trustee who piloted a failed motion targeting nudity at the city’s Pride parade has now raised concerns about pedophiles at the event.
Sam Sotiropoulos put forward a motion in March that would have had the Toronto District School Board formally request that the city enforce public nudity laws at the WorldPride parade in June.
Noting the board’s longtime sponsorship of the Pride festival, Sotiropoulos had said his constituents were concerned about participating in what was not a “family-friendly event.”
Two days after the motion failed in a vote, Sotiropoulos was interviewed on NewsTalk 1010 on April 11. “Can you tell me definitely that all those people who are going about nude are gay? Can you definitely guarantee to me that there may not be a kiddie fiddler mixed up among them?” Sotiropoulos asked host Jim Richards.
Sotiropoulos backtracked when Richards confronted him.
“Jim, I’m not saying that it has. What I am saying is that there are laws in this country,” Sotiropoulos said. “As an institution, we are not only in the business of educating children; we’re in the business of protecting children.”
“Protecting them from what?” Richards asked.
“Protecting them from watching the law being broken is a legitimate concern,” Sotiropoulos said. “Public nudity is not legal any way you slice it.”
A 2012 Ontario ruling found that nudity at a rally or demonstration can be considered part of the Charter-guaranteed right of personal expression.
Sotiropoulos also took to Twitter to rail against an anti-bullying movement and accused “progressives” of provoking Russia’s crackdown on gay rights.
“The ~progressives~ among us decry Vladimir Putin, without admitting/realizing it was their political ideals which made him possible,” he tweeted on April 12.
In a series of bizarre tweets, Sotiropoulos dismissed the board-sponsored Pink Shirt Day.
“I like the colour pink, I wear it often. But, only when I feel like it, not when others wish to include me in their agenda,” he tweeted, before poking fun at “progressives” and suggesting people eat pink food instead.