Mayor Rob Ford simplifies issue of gun violence

Once again, the scourge of gun violence has come to the fore in our city. The bedlam has generated impulsive and careless comments, some bordering on racism.

Most notable were Mayor Rob Ford and Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney’s call to deport firearms offenders. This begs the question: Will Kenney’s majority Conservative government change Canada’s citizenship laws so that Canadian citizens who commit gun crimes are also exiled? Of course not, because this would be unconstitutional. So let’s tone down the rhetoric and animus.

Unfortunately, the mayor and minister have not been alone in simplifying a complex social issue — our society at large, including the news media, have been culpable as well.

Whether it takes place at an obscure location between rival factions or in a “public” space such as Danzig St. or the Eaton Centre, we must denounce all incidents of gun violence equally and unequivocally. Failing to do so only reaffirms the dangerous fallacy that the lives of some are less valued than those of others in our city, thus contributing to the sense of hopelessness faced by many youth.

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