Using immigrants to make a point

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Mayor Tory pushes his subway plan

Any talk about immigrants being impacted negatively around 27th June which is Canada’s Multicultural Day and Canada Day gets the attention of everyone.

Recently, Toronto Mayor John Tory in an editorial in support of the Scarborough subway extension implied that Torontonians living outside of Scarborough don’t care about providing transit for the area’s largely immigrant population in an editorial in support of the subway extension.

In a statement issued to CBC Toronto after Matlow’s interview, Tory’s director of communications Amanda Galbraith said the mayor’s editorial “was not meant to be divisive but to point out an inequity in our transit system that needs to be addressed.”

Tory was warning that cancelling the Scarborough subway extension would cause delays, impact relationships with other levels of government “and leave the people of Scarborough without transit even longer,” Galbraith said.

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“He also pointed out that Scarborough, which has a large population of new Canadians, remains the only part of Toronto not connected into the subway system.

“The bottom line is Scarborough is underserved by transit. Dramatically so compared to the rest of the city. Many of the people who live in Scarborough are newcomers to our city, and they need opportunities for mobility on transit.”

Scarborough does have a majority of its residents who belong to immigrant backgrounds, but using them to make a point may actually do the trick. Many people are offended by Mayor Tory’s use of immigrants in a debate over its viability.

By saying that those living outside Scarborough are anti-subway extension are by extension also racists may end up silencing all critics of the project.

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