Give the death penalty to sex offenders? Toronto City Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti sure thinks so.
In the ongoing City Council battle for and against all-ages raves on the Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) grounds, Toronto Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti, a political flip-flopper (he was NDP in the 90’s, and is staunchly conservative today) well known primarily for speaking out against gays and proposing to turn Toronto Island into a prostitution paradise, has disclosed to the public his stance on how to deal with sex offenders in the community: kill ‘em.
The issue of sex offenders came into the discussion after Mammoliti said in a press release that these all-ages events are opportunities for local pedophiles to fraternize with local youth, and that Parkdale, a neighbourhood adjacent to the CNE, is a particularly worrisome “pedophile district.” He also questioned Parkdale Councillor Gord Perks’ motives for supporting the all-ages raves, suggesting that Perks is representing the will of the local pedophile. Mammoliti’s reference to neighbourhood pedophile concentrations comes after the Ontario government’s release of a provincial sex offender map, a public disclosure of information that our fave transparency watchdog Ann Cavoukian championed herself.
Immediately after the press release, Mammoliti’s Parkdale comments were widely publicized and condemned, with #ParkdaleLove suddenly becoming a trending topic on Twitter. Parkdale Councillor Perks issued a response calling Mammoliti’s comment an “awful slur” against a neighbourhood he considers “one of the best places to live in the world.” Even Doug Ford, brother of Mammoliti’s closest political ally Mayor Rob, lashed out, claiming publicly that Councillor Mammoliti has “lost his mind” for accusing a whole district of “being pedophiles”.
Weirdly enough, throughout all the shock and horror that ensued from the slandering of this vibrant Toronto neighbourhood, no one paid much attention to the comments Mammoliti has made since the press release. On Monday in an interview with CTV News, Mammoliti vocalized his strong feelings against pedophiles loud and clear: “If it were me, I’d be chasing them [the sex offenders] out of my community for sure if I knew where they lived,” and “I am not representative of any pedophile; in fact, I’d like to see them dead, quite frankly.”
At this point, we’re not even sure if it’s an empty threat. On Monday, Mammoliti told the Toronto Star that he’s actively seeking out the residential whereabouts of the 15 registered sex offenders in his district Ward 7 to do Lil-B-knows-what once he finds them. The fact that Mammoliti doesn’t seem to acknowledge the difference between pedophiles and all sex offenders is troubling, and entirely expected given his character. We imagine that he and some good, upstanding folks from the neighbourhood will form a pitchfork-wielding mob and shout scary things outside the pedophiles’ homes, a scenario that’s not actually all that skewed from reality.
What’s crazy about this scenario rather than the majority of others is that this particular children-protecting lynch-mob would be instigated by an elected government official. That would be extra-judicial justice from a lawmaker himself.
Something wrong about this picture? Yeah, this guy is nuts, and probably dangerous on top of that. Just when we thought Toronto municipal politics couldn’t get any crazier, this guy steps in and takes the cake.
Fortunately, we’re confident that the general public is smart enough (well…confident is a strong word) to spot an ugly speck in the system before it does any serious damage, and that before Mammoliti ever gets a chance to pick up his pitchfork, an angry Twitter mob will likely do him in first.