It never ceases to amaze me the kind of power that human speech holds. Bulwer-Lyton got it right when he said “the pen is mightier than the sword”. It only takes one word spoken in the wrong context, at the wrong time, and in front of the wrong people to send a person who is at the very top, straight to rock bottom.
Rob Ford, mayor of Toronto, has been treading over hot coals for the past few weeks, ever since the the lawsuit was made against him by Mr. Foulidis concerning that supposedly defamatory statement made by Ford, which was published in the Toronto Sun. With 6 million dollars at stake, this case has taken many crazy twists and turns, but this weeks trial outcome has taken many by surprise.
It was decided in an Ontario court that Mr. Ford will have to step down from his position as mayor. The judge has given him two weeks, during which time they will work through putting everything in order to allow for smooth transition of management. These couple of weeks also allow for inquiries to be made, in order to determine whether this will remain the final judgement, or whether there is some legal precedence that would allow him to be reinstated.
The reason for this sudden dismissal was due to what the court calls “a violation of interest rules for municipal politicians”. What does this mean? Well, ‘conflict of interest’ is basically when someone is involved in many different interests, one of which has the potential to corrupt their motivation when dealing with one of the other interests. It’s the whole idea of trying not to take things personally, since a personal involvement can corrupt a person’s judgement in the matter.
It’s difficult to say what’s going to happen next. If he does end up stepping down, there’s always the possibility that he could run again for his position. It’s also possible that his brother might pull the chair out from under him decide that it’s his turn to take up the responsibilities of the city. It’s up in the air at the moment, and all we can do is wait for the outcome, whatever it may be.