Ontario’s Unpopular Premier Cancels Annual Canada Day Festivities at Queen’s Park, claiming that the event has turned into a costly bust anyway.
A Brief Commentary by Doug Draper
Posted June 24th, 2019 on Niagara At Large
Ontario Premier Doug Ford, whose popularity numbers in the polls have already tanked lower than Liberal Premier Kathleen Wynne’s during her last year in office, has cancelled this year’s Canada Day festivities on the lawns of Queen’s Park.
And this time, I find myself in the rare position of wholeheartedly agreeing with Ford’s decision to cancel or cut something.
Pulling the plug on the festivities at Queen’s Park, means that Ontarians don’t have to spend a Canada Day that should be an occasion for celebrating what makes this country great – our natural and built heritage, and our public health care, education and other services we have for our young, our old and our most vulnerable – with a premier who, with the help of his party hacks, has been working at warp speed over the past 12 months to shred so much of that.
And Ford doesn’t have to face yet another gathering of Ontarians where loud, sustained choruses of boos become a story on the news.
Earlier this year, just to name a few times we know of, Ford received a hardy round of boos from an audience attending an event for the Special Olympics, and again, by an audience attending a high-tech conference in Ontario.
But it had to be the tsunami of boos he receive earlier this June, when the massive out-door celebration for the 2019 NBA champs, the Raptors, was being telecast live, for millions across the province and country, that hurt Ford the most.
There Ford was being greeted as he took his turn walking onto a stage with some of his arch enemies, Toronto Mayor John Tory and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, with a wave of boos that, according to eyewitnesses in the huge crowd at Toronto’s Nathan Phillip Square, were far louder than what was picked up on broadcast mikes.
You’ve got to hand it to those Raptor fans. They sure did know what basketball team to cheer for and they can obviously pick a politician who deserves to be buried in boos too. (Click on the screen below to watch.)
With all of that, why would Ford want to do as he did on Canada Day 2018, and attend an event where, unlike the gathering of sycophants and special moneyed interests waving “For the People” flags and cheering him at a so-called “Ford Fest” this June 22nd, he has little or no control over who comes in the gate.
And why would anyone in their right mind want to spend any part of their Canada Day on the same lawns with him. I’d want to do that about as much as I would not to go to the dentist to have all my molars pulled out on my birthday.
According to a report this June 24th on CBC, a spokesperson for Ford said last year’s Queen’s Park festivities only attracted about 5,000 people anyway and cost about $300.000 or $400,000 to put on (which makes one wonder whose friends or family members had a hand in the planning).
By the way, there was usually always a large sea of people who travelled to Queen’s Park for Canada Day. So far as the relatively small number that showed up last year, let’s remember that Ford was already premier then too, and although he had only been sworn in for a few days, a majority of Ontarians who went to the polls in last year’s provincial election, did not vote for this guy in spite of how much they may have had it with then Liberal premier Kathleen Wynne.
What Ford and company have decided to do instead this Canada Day is pay the cost (a reported $80,000) for free tickets for the first 500 people who show up at any one of about 10 attractions across the province on Canada Day.
One of the attractions on the list is Niagara Parks’ Butterfly Conservatory, which is a great place for a family to go if you have never been there. The next closest attraction to Niagara on the list is the Royal Botanical Gardens in Burlington.
The complete is included immediately below –
- Ontario Science Centre.
- Cinesphere at Ontario Place.
- Royal Ontario Museum.
- McMichael Canadian Art Collection in Vaughan.
- Royal Botanical Gardens in Burlington.
- Fort William Historical Park in Thunder Bay.
- Huronia Historical Parks in Midland and Penetanguishene.
- Butterfly Conservatory — Niagara Parks Commission.
- Science North in Sudbury.
- St. Lawrence Parks Commission.
To read a CBC story on this, click on – https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/queens-park-canada-day-cancelled-1.5186503 .
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