It takes a real man to admit when he’s afraid, and I’ve got to admit that I was afraid when Rob Ford announced that he was going to take a step away from campaigning to go to rehab.
Look, am I the world’s greatest hard-hitting investigative journalist? Of course I am. But do I, on occasion, like to shy away from hard work and drink three bottles of Jim Beam? Show me a man who doesn’t! And Rob Ford made it really easy for me to take a day off (or… a night on). Rob Ford was the crack-smoking mayor of Canada’s biggest city — he practically did my job for me. (It’s not like he was doing his job…)
And it wasn’t just the crack thing, it was everything. (Although, let’s be honest, it was mostly the crack thing. I mean, he smoked crack while he was mayor of Toronto … and then lied about it!) I mean, Rob Ford once wanted to ban anyone with a criminal record from Toronto (which, hopefully, soon will include Rob Ford).
So, yeah, I was afraid that when Rob Ford stepped away to get help that I was going to have to start digging for stories again. But then there was Doug Ford.
Thank God for Doug Ford!
You see, Doug E. Ford is picking up right where his brother, Robert, left off. Recently, when speaking about a home for developmentally-disabled youth in Etobicoke (which, I’m told, is the actual name of an actual town), Doug E. Ford said, “My heart goes out to kids with autism. But no one told me they’d be leaving the house.” And then proceeded to say they’ve “ruined the community.”
With Doug E. Ford going around saying stuff like that, I don’t even have to try anymore. Please excuse me while I crack open this first bottle of Jim Beam. (Screw it, I’m opening all three!)
I mean, seriously, Doug E. Ford, what the hell were you thinking? There’s no way you actually thought that you could say something like that and people wouldn’t get upset about it. That it wouldn’t be the only thing people were talking about. You’d be a crazy person to believe that.
And that’s when I realized why Doug E. Ford is doing this. He is a crazy person, but a crazy smart person.
He’s trying to draw the attention away from his brother. No one is going to be talking about how Rob Ford was spotted out-and-about in Ontario cottage country last week (where, I’m told, crack is available) and not in rehab (where, I’m told, crack isn’t available … unless you know who to ask).
Doug E. Ford doesn’t actually think autistic children are ruining the community, he’s just saying they do so people won’t pay attention to the fact that his brother, Rob Ford, who is running for re-election, is literally incapable of keeping a promise.
Look, it’s the only logical explanation. Seriously.
Because, if that wasn’t the reason that Doug E. Ford said that kids with autism shouldn’t leave the house, then he’s a terrible, terrible human being.
But, if he said it to protect the world from finding out that his crack-addict mayor of a brother is a liar, then he’s … well … still a terrible, terrible person.
Maybe the Fords are just all around terrible, terrible people, and we just have to learn to accept that.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, all this making fun of an addict has made me thirsty … and I have three bottles of Jim Beam to drink.
Nathaniel Moher is an award-winning TV and screenwriter living in Vancouver. This column first appeared in The Flying Shingle.