Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Toronto Councillor Uses His Position to Bully Margaret Atwood

Library cuts will happen ‘in a heartbeat,’ Doug Ford says. (Toronto Globe and Mail, 7/26/2011)

Excerpt:     Doug Ford [doing his best Brian Dennehy impression], the blunt-talking Toronto councillor and brother to the mayor, is ratcheting up the cost-cutting rhetoric at city hall, vowing to support library closings and dismissing the efforts of a CanLit legend to spare branches from the chopping block.

Mr. Ford, a rookie councillor who has quickly gained a reputation for headline-grabbing statements, said Tuesday he would close a library in his ward “in a heartbeat,” characterizing a growing movement to save branches backed by Margaret Atwood as an “over-reaction,” led by “library groups.”

“She’s not down here. She’s not dealing with the problem,” he went on to say. “Tell her to go run in the next election and get democratically elected.”

The councillor’s remarks came on the same day that people packed a meeting of the Toronto Library Board to discuss the proposed cuts to the city’s 98 branches, with the overflow crowd following the debate on closed-circuit television in a room next door.

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