2014 Villain: Doug Ford
Nominated for: being all the things Doug Ford is.
Torontoist is ending the year by naming our Heroes and Villains—the people, places, things, and ideas that have had the most positive and negative impacts on the city over the past 12 months. Cast your ballot until 5 p.m. on December 30. At noon on December 31, we’ll reveal your choices for Toronto’s Superhero and Supervillain of the year.
Doug Ford, we hardly knew ye—after all, you didn’t show up to work much this year, or any other year since you took office in 2010 for the first and hopefully last time—but we certainly know enough to peg you as a villain.
Sifting through the farrago of disgraces that comprise your four-year foray into municipal politics (during which, it’s worth mentioning, you accomplished almost nothing), one recalls the tinfoil-hat conspiracy theories, the paranoid and slanderous invective hurled at police Chief Bill Blair, the obvious and indefensible falsehoods pertaining to your brother Rob’s alcoholism, and the unprovoked attacks directed at a group home for autistic teens.
And it’s not just the number of fatuous comments and outrageous lies that astounds—the efficiency with which you delivered them is equally impressive. There was that homophobic rant about the Pride Parade, during which you mentioned “buck-naked men” five times in four minutes. There was the week during which you invoked “jihad” on two separate occasions. There was that time you lied (or were disingenuous, to borrow a term) 19 times in a three-and-a-half–minute speech about transit.
But it’s your contempt for all Torontonians (as distinguished from your contempt for specific groups of Torontonians) that rankles most—because it’s surely contempt that drove you to sign up at the last minute to run for mayor despite having previously stated that you couldn’t wait to leave City Hall behind, just as it’s contempt that instilled in you the evident belief that you were entitled, like some hickish Habsburg, to the mayor’s seat simply by virtue of your last name.
Thankfully, Torontonians turned up in record numbers on October 27 to put an end to the Ford era, and, seeing the writing on the wall, you turned up a month later to put a spike in your Ontario PC leadership aspirations. But the ill will you fomented and the divisiveness you caused during your mercifully short political career are unforgivable.
And so, Doug Ford, for being a blithering, bigoted bully full of contempt and bereft of shame, we nominate you for 2014 Supervillain of the Year.