Toronto Councillor Warns of Communist Purge at City Hall, Wraps Face in Electrical Tape
Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti believes he is being ousted from a committee on bike lanes by communists
A spectre is haunting Toronto city hall – the spectre of bike lanes.
In a photo posted to Twitter this week, Mammoliti wrapped electrical tape over his face and posed next to a Canadian flag, accusing “comrade” Mike Layton and other “socialists” of trying to purge him from Toronto’s Public Works and Infrastructure Committee to silence his opinions about “bike lanes.”
DEMOCRACY DEAD AT CITY HALL- Now the Socialists want to take me off the Works Committee simply for voicing my objecting to how bike lanes are being built out in the City of Toronto. COMRADE @m_layton wants to second the motion. pic.twitter.com/tim6vsh5BP
— Giorgio Mammoliti (@mammolitiward7) June 18, 2018
Mammoliti, who advocates banning bikes from city streets, was apparently reacting to recent calls from citizens and colleagues alike for Mayor John Tory to remove the Ward 7 councillor from the city’s public works committee.
Last week, Councillor Mike Layton tweeted that Mammoliti’s poor attendance record and erratic behaviour show he’s “not interested in building safer streets,” adding that he would personally “second the motion” if Tory removes Mammoliti from the committee.
Please @JohnTory. There is only one meeting left. He doesn’t come to council meetings anyhow. He’s offensive to deputants. He’s certainly not interested in building safer streets. I will second the motion. https://t.co/Sk3uRLGEFZ
— Mike Layton (@m_layton) June 15, 2018
Twitter’s reaction to Mammoliti’s bizarre photo went pretty well as you’d expect:
I wonder if it’s wise for Giorgio to tweet a image that will inspire the imaginations of so many people. https://t.co/p9Ww8XA48I
— Gord Perks (@gordperks) June 18, 2018
However, Mammoliti’s over-the-top anti-bike rhetoric also comes in the wake of a slew of tragic accidents that have taken the lives of two cyclists and one pedestrian.
While Mammoliti plays dress up on Twitter, in reality many cyclists feel unsafe on Toronto’s streets, where inadequate infrastructure and reckless driving behaviour is putting lives at risk.
Not even a seperated, elevated #biketo lane can stop ’em.
It’s a sense of entitlement, caring about personal convenience more than public safety, and believing that they won’t get caught. pic.twitter.com/PTsK3YyJ82
— Adam Kirsh (@kirshadam) June 12, 2018
Just around the corner from the fatal cyclist accident?. I tagged 3 vehicles in the #bikeTO lane. Construction vehicles/ trailers not engaged in the road work will be tagged as well as any other vehicles like this @FedExCanada $150 x3 served. pic.twitter.com/FwqcryQoqa
— PEO Erin Urquhart (@TPS_BikeHart) June 12, 2018
— ? in the ?? lane (@car_in_bikelane) June 17, 2018
Unfortunately, neither the deaths nor the many shocking tales from cyclists have convinced people like Mammoliti to tone it down and listen.
“I do not believe bicycles should be on roads at all,” says Coun. Mammoliti. He thinks all bike infrastructure can go through parks and greenspaces. “We’re taking a downtown approach to the suburbs — that’s not going to work.”
— Matt Elliott (@GraphicMatt) June 12, 2018
Mammoliti continues! “I was just waiting for this woman to get hit by a car when she was a zigzagging…”
McMahon wants him to apologize.
Mammoliti refuses. “It was a woman that was going to get killed because of her choice on how she was riding her bicycle,” he says.
— Matt Elliott (@GraphicMatt) June 12, 2018
It is this rhetoric that is escalating many violent confrontations between road users across Toronto, turning neighbour against neighbour. The war metaphor has a powerful impact on people. We are not enemies – stop talking about us like we are completely different people. https://t.co/VndZlE83rl
— Mike Layton (@m_layton) June 18, 2018
According to Toronto police, some 20 cyclists and pedestrians have already died on Toronto’s streets this year.
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