It’s time for journalists to quit making jokes about Toronto mayor Rob Ford’s weight, writes John Lorinc in today’s Toronto Standard column.
“Here’s my challenge to the journalists, headline writers and pundits who are in the business of commenting on the (mostly flawed) policies of the Ford administration,” writes Lorinc, “It’s time to pack up the fat jokes and put them away — for good. We’d all be better off if we avoided making connections between the mayor’s policies and his person.”
It has become way, way too acceptable for the media to use Ford’s physique as a cudgel for critiquing his policies, Lorinc adds, before citing numerous digs at Ford by journalists, including:
“It ain’t over until the fat lady sings…Ford just sang.” (Star online during Pride weekend)
“Cutting into the fat of Ford’s first budget” (National Post)
Lorinc says journalists likely crossed the line after the now infamous near-naked spoof of Ford on NOW Magazine‘s cover: “We all smirked and squirmed and then I think we may have quietly, and possibly unconsciously, lowered our collective standards.”
And there they’ve stayed — to the benefit of no one.
“From my perspective as a journalist who comments on local politics, the most effective way to hold Ford accountable is to vigorously critique his policies, not his inseam,” concludes Lorinc, “Let’s toss the political trash talk into the garbage where it belongs.”
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