I admit to chuckling when Toronto first elected Rob Ford. While we here in Calgary, a city often accused by the uninformed of being a tad rednecked, chose the bright, well-educated, articulate Naheed Nenshi as mayor, Toronto chose the reddest of rednecks. I wouldn't say we were feeling superior, but there may have been a trace of smugness mixed in with the humour.
Well, it isn't funny any more. It's about more than Toronto now. When a country's premier city elects a foul-mouthed, alcoholic, crack-smoking friend of gangsters as mayor, the whole country looks bad.
And now Torontonians are rubbing it in. As ever more sordid revelations about this unsavoury boor come to light, his popularity with his fellow citizens actually increases. He now has, I understand, a 44 per cent approval rating.
This is too much, Toronto. If you want to make your city an international laughing stock, that's your business, but when you make all of us look like a nation of hosers, you've gone way too far. You owe every last Canadian outside your city boundaries a heartfelt apology.