Deputy Mayor calls on Rob Ford to apologize over remarks about Toronto Star reporter

Ford is in hot water over comments he made in a TV interview in which he appears to insinuate a Toronto Star reporter is a pedophile

Rob Ford antagonizes a city councillor with hand gestures during a meeting at Toronto City Hall
Photo: CTV News

Toronto's Deputy Mayor is calling on Rob Ford to apologize.

Norm Kelly believes Ford crossed the line during a TV interview that aired Monday night.

The Mayor sparked yet another controversy and the threat of legal action when he appeared to accuse a Toronto Star reporter of having pedophilic tendencies in a televised interview.

The Toronto Star journalist, Daniel Dale, denounced any such suggestion as ``categorically false.''

``It's amazing. I don't know what to say about it,'' Dale said in an interview Tuesday.

``In the calmest terms possible, it is unpleasant when the mayor of the biggest city in Canada essentially accuses you, or suggests, you are a pedophile.''

Kelly says Ford owes Dale an apology.

"It's almost beyond comment.  It fits into a pattern that changes the focus from himself (Mayor Ford) to someone else," he says.

"In this instance, it goes beyond the pale and I think there should be an apology for that."

The scandal-plagued mayor, who has lost most of his mayoral powers, made the comment in a Vision TV interview Monday night with former media baron and convicted felon, Conrad Black.

At one point in the interview, Black asked Ford about media intrusion on his family's privacy, and Ford singled out Dale for an incident that happened in May 2012.

Ford had confronted Dale outside the mayor's west-end home in an adjacent park the mayor was looking to buy.

``Daniel Dale is in my backyard taking pictures. I have little kids. He's taking pictures of little kids,'' Ford said.

``I don't want to say that word but you start thinking what this guy is all about.''

Dale, who seemed bemused by Ford's comments, said at no time did he ever take any photographs of the mayor's family, house or even his property -- and a police investigation bore that out.

He said the Star's lawyers were pondering next steps.

Ford was not immediately available to comment, but his brother, Coun. Doug Ford, said the mayor did not suggest Dale was a pedophile.

Neither Black nor Vision TV responded to a request for comment Tuesday.

However, Vision's code of ethics warns against programming that misrepresents or incites hatred against any individual. It also promises that where a ``significant unfairness occurs, it shall be admitted and corrected in a context of equal prominence.''

Deputy Mayor Norm Kelly, who has assumed most of the mayor's powers, denounced Ford's comments.

``That's not only a regrettable position of the mayor, but I think it's dead wrong,'' Kelly said.

``It's almost beyond comment. It fits into a pattern that changes the focus from himself to someone else. It goes beyond the pale and I think there should be an apology for that.''

Toronto Star lawyers could not immediately be reached for comment.

However, in a statement in response to Ford's remarks, the paper's editor in chief Michael Cooke slammed Ford:

``Just when you think Mayor Ford has said the most stupid thing, such as letting the whole world know about his sex life at home, he tops himself with another outrage,'' Cooke said.

``Mr. Ford calling reporter Daniel Dale a pedophile tells you all you need to know about our mayor's brain. So sad for all of us.''

Among other things, Ford has garnered national and international attention for his admission to smoking crack cocaine, buying illegal drugs and making an obscene comment about a female aide on national television.

Kelly suggested it was time for reporters to give Ford a wider berth.

``If the media didn't follow the mayor as closely as it has, I think it would take the oxygen out of the room,'' Kelly said.

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  • 37
  1. tanjo posted on 12/10/2013 03:01 PM
    Ford's lawyer: Epic Facepalm. Then he orders a new yacht.
  2. john posted on 12/10/2013 03:09 PM
    maybe the guy is .
    the one thing i would never do is take a picture without asking for permission if it is in privet property . i dont care about this reporter he had no right doing it .
    1. Dave in Etobicoke posted on 12/10/2013 07:32 PM
      @john He had no right doing what he didn't do. Thanks for coming out. Next!
  3. Karl Burgin posted on 12/10/2013 03:35 PM
    Ford didn't go far enough. He should have made mention of those hiding in bushes watching his family when he goes up north.
    Or when he suffered a work-related injury when a camera guy knocked him with equipment- and then sue for medical issues after the fact.

    It's high time these maggots got what was coming to them. They wanna be on Ford 24/7 but not experience any blow-back. Tough luck with that one.
  4. Frankie posted on 12/10/2013 03:59 PM
    Someone hiding in the bushes taking photos of his kids. A rational person can't be forgiven for thinking the photographer is a pedophile.

    Are we now suing people for their thoughts? Has the Soviet Union been resurrected or is this N. Korea?

    He doesn't owe an apology for verbalizing what he thought. and if the photographer goes after him in court I hope the judge makes him pay all costs for such a useless claim
    1. Dave from Newmarket posted on 12/10/2013 07:35 PM
      @Frankie What photographer? And it's the Sylvia Union. Go ask rookie councillor Doug Ford.
  5. Bob posted on 12/10/2013 04:13 PM
    To Frankie and Johnnie, what part of "Dale, who seemed bemused by Ford's comments, said at no time did he ever take any photographs of the mayor's family, house or even his property -- and a police investigation bore that out" did you not understand? Not too bright.
    1. Karl Burgin posted on 12/10/2013 04:23 PM
      @Bob ...which then begs the question, why the hell was he there to begin with?
    2. AC posted on 12/11/2013 09:51 AM
      @Bob show some pity on these dope heads Bob. same iq as the Fords.
      Dale never took photos and was never on private property according to police. he did nothing wrong.
      I hope Dale owns the Fords printing business when this is over
  6. zed posted on 12/10/2013 04:22 PM
    It's fair comment from the Mayor on backyard snoops with cameras, but Coun. Kelly's attempts at moralizing are laughable.
    1. tanjo posted on 12/10/2013 04:37 PM
      @zed They would be if there actually were backyard snoops with cameras.

      Read the article first, then comment.
  7. Angry Bill posted on 12/10/2013 04:58 PM
    Ford said he didn't want to say the word, and he didn't... So until he does, you got nothing actionable. All the Star is doing is continuing to make hay off of Ford with all this, under the guise of this being a moral, and maybe even legal, outrage.
    1. Karl Burgin posted on 12/10/2013 06:33 PM
      @Angry Bill Yep....and I bet Ford's lawyers are grateful for that too...
    2. tanjo posted on 12/11/2013 08:25 AM
      @Angry Bill He does not have to say the word for his comments to be actionable. Dale just has to prove that people believe it because he said it.

      This is going to cost Ford. It might also cost Black, as the interview was not live, it was prerecorded. Somebody decided to leave that in.
  8. SojBee posted on 12/11/2013 09:01 AM
    Absolute crap!! What! The Press is now off limits. I don't think so, any fool that goes behind the mayor's house and shoots into his property under the guise of taking Photos of public property going for sale should be looked on with suspicion. I mean the mayor has a wife and kids, what if any of them were naked and the images got online! Absolutely no apologies here! I guess revenge, as they say, is a bitch! But if you are going to dish it out, be ready to take it as well. The Toronto star is full of paparazzi who are ready to press lynch the mayor and are acting as judge and jury! Why else would their lawyers make sure mere speculations and innuendoes are released to the public – under the guise of public interest?!
    1. AC posted on 12/11/2013 09:42 AM
      @SojBee no images were ever taken. that was confirmed by the police back then. the reporter was never on private property.
      i hope Dale sues the the stupid idiot plus vision tv for airing it.
      all the legal people i read in the press say it has merit for dafamation.
      i hope Dale owns the Ford printing business when said and done
  9. MichaelP posted on 12/11/2013 09:46 AM
    "Mr. Ford calling reporter Daniel Dale a pedophile tells you all you need to know about our mayor's brain. So sad for all of us"

    this is what the Star editor said. Since Ford never said such a thing then Dale (who are we kidding, the Star) should be very careful about legal action. No reason that the mayor couldn't counter sue since the Star's editor just made a false claim about the mayor.
  10. Peter posted on 12/11/2013 10:36 AM

    * * * Mayor Ford Wins Again * * *

    You have to give Mayor Ford credit.
    He sure knows how to handle the press. He's not afraid to make some fun of the press with the innuendo. We know he's not serious, but The Star wants to project it as serious. - a make a desperate grab to retaliate.

    I liked it when the reporters were asking him to re-state his comment from the Conrad Blacks show. Mayor Ford answered the question but the reporters kept hassling him, - Mayor Ford gets to walk away without answering more questions. The reporters never learn.

    Mayor Ford is so smart. I don't know of anyone else that can handle the press so well.

    Good going Mayor Ford

    Thank you Newstalk 1010
    1. Karl Burgin posted on 12/11/2013 10:40 AM
      @Peter He doesn't get it right all the time- but this time around, its simply masterful. Giving the Star a taste of it's own horse-$#!+ medicine.

      Better open up and say ahhhh!!!!! Mr. Dale.
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