Big Kiss Virgin Toronto

Morning Brew: Rob Ford on homelessness, man killed with a crossbow, Islanders annoyed with mink population, Metrolinx plans in danger?

Another day, another Rob Ford controversy. Poverty activists are up in arms following Ford's suggestion on a radio show that homeless people should be forcibly taken from the streets during severe cold weather. Speaking to John Oakley, the mayor said, "We can't leave people out on the sidewalks freezing to death. I'm sorry. I'm going to tell the social workers, get them off the street, get them into a shelter." Bruno Scorsone, executive director of the Good Neighbours Club, a day centre for homeless older men, says society's response to homelessness should be more "dignified and humane" and less "fascistic." Gosh, it's been a long two days already, hasn't it?

One of Toronto's most bizarre murders went down yesterday in broad daylight when a man was felled by a crossbow. The unusual killing happened around 4 p.m. at a library on Main Street, near Gerrard Street East. A man walked into the branch, sprayed a substance - possibly pepper spray - and shot the sitting victim in front of several witnesses and then calmly left.The victim was pronounced dead at the scene. Thanks to a quick-thinking elderly man who wrote down the suspect's licence plate, the police tracked down a man at a residential address in Scarborough, though he has yet to be charged.

Toronto Islanders aren't so happy with the mink population, which is killing the island's goldfish, and possibly other island wildlife. Though initially looked upon with passive curiosity, the minks are getting a second look since goldfish have never disappeared before. "I won't replenish my pond until there's a solution," said Barbara Roerick, a Ward's Island resident for decades. "Why should I fatten up the mink with my fish?" As of right, there are no plans to trap the minks or drive them out. People are simply getting creative about protecting their fish. Like if you start seeing a lot of people wearing mink stoles all of a sudden.

Metrolinx's usefulness is now in question, thanks to Rob Ford. In just one day, Toronto's new mayor blew apart a lengthy elaborate plan hatched by the transportation agency and Dalton McGuinty's Liberals that was to eradicate the region's gridlock crisis. Now with Ford's insistence that Toronto wants more subways and not light rail, and McGuinty's eagerness to cooperate with the new mayor, Metrolinx's regional transportation plan "could all go up in a fairly quick puff of smoke in the next couple of weeks," observes University of Windsor political scientist David Docherty. Well, you know the old nursery rhyme: "He huffed and he puffed and he blew the Metrolinx house down."

In Brief:

Photo by Roger Cullman in the blogTO Flickr pool.

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