Toronto Diary
2 min

Want to prevent gang violence? You’re doing it wrong

So. What the hell.

Look, by now I’m sure you’ve heard about the mind-bogglingly violent and senseless shoot-out between gang members in Scarborough that erupted during a street party, wherein two people died and a toddler was shot. I don’t care how world weary and immune to sorrow you are; a toddler getting shot in a gang fight is so absurdly horrendous and morally vacant, the English language has yet to invent a word to describe how bleak it is.

This morning, Rob Ford showed up at the scene of the crime, because if there’s one thing Rob Ford is good at, it’s showing up to the scene of a crime and offering support and not much else. Ford vowed to wage war on those, whom he referred to as “spineless cowards,” who did this. Except it turns out Ford was actually the sole vote against grant programs that would have gone to community development and — wait for it — gang prevention programs.

The six programs would have sailed through council unanimously on Friday, without a vote, had Ford not placed a “hold” on the items in order to vote against them. He lost the votes 34-1, 34-1, 33-1, 34-1, 35-1, and 35-1. Ford did not speak before the votes, and he would not answer a question on the subject from a Star reporter in a media scrum. Ford was also silent when he voted in June against accepting federal money for a gang prevention project that would not have cost the city anything. He lost that vote 33-1.

[…] Ford voted the same way on the grants programs last July, also in silence. He lost 43-1 in votes on four programs, 42-2 on the fifth, and 41-3 on the sixth. He also lost 37-1 last July in a vote on anti-HIV/AIDS grants. He supported an HIV prevention grant this week. (via The Toronto Star)

The tl;dr version: Ford wants to end gang violence but refuses to vote for any program that could conceivably help stop it. If only there were some image, maybe from Zero Punctuation, to describe this scenario. Oh, wait, there is!

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