As a citizen of Toronto, I can’t help but feel embarrassed by the conduct and behaviour of my beloved city’s current mayor. For a while I tried to ignore it. It will pass, I thought. The media will lose interest. Such stories, so remarkable, so sensational, cannot last forever. And yet they persist, extending beyond our front pages to the home pages of Gawker, the Guardian and so on. It’s embarrassing.I do not wish to quell such stories or limit the debates they provoke. This kind of civic debate and engagement is important, and we would all be better served if more journalists pursued stories as aggressively as they have in this case. But I do lament the total eclipse of all that is good about my city by the buffoonery of a single man. For Toronto is — at least to my mind — one of the most beautiful experiments in tolerance, creativity and community-building the world has seen. And that’s what really deserves global attention.
To this end, I invite you all to take pictures, tweet and blog about all the things that make Toronto so beautiful by using the hashtag #torontothegood. We are more than our mayor. Let’s celebrate #torontothegood.
Photo by Adam Bunch.