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An Open Letter to 2018 Mayor John Tory from 2014 Candidate John Tory

Dear Mayor Tory, 
It’s been a while since we talked. You probably don’t even remember me. I’m the guy who stood up for law-abiding citizens when Olivia Chow wanted to throw them to the wolves during Toronto’s 2014 mayoral election.
“There’s no reason why anyone needs a handgun in a big city like ours,” she said.
Chow, then running for the job you hold today, wanted to scapegoat Toronto’s legal gun owners as part of her election platform.
But me? I refused to allow it. 
“Handguns are already strictly regulated by the federal government. What Ms. Chow doesn’t seem to understand is that criminals and gang members don’t obey the law. Calling for such a ban isn’t leadership. It’s an empty gesture.” 
That was my written response. Do you remember, John? 
Back then, I was the principled voice of reason. I was so proud to stand up for decent Torontonians, not because of the political race, but because it was the right thing to do.
But you, Mayor Tory, you’ve lost your way. When I heard you echo Olivia Chow’s statement almost word for ignorant word, I was horrified.
“Why does anyone in this city need to have a gun at all?” you ask repeatedly.
My response to Ms. Chow’s insanity then, is an equally fitting rebuke of yours today.
Ontario Premier Doug Ford, in response to your call for a handgun ban, said, “We have to refocus all our resources going after the bad guys, not the good guys.”
Back in 2014, Mayor Rob Ford accused Olivia Chow of “political grandstanding.” Do you see the irony of Rob Ford’s brother, our new premier, calling you out for the same thing? Probably not. 
Four short years ago you demolished Olivia Chow when you pointed out the obvious, that “criminals and gang members don’t obey the law.” 
Today, you embraced the mantra of her failed mayoral campaign. There is a lesson in that sentence, John, if you’re willing to pay attention. 
My heart broke when you said, “if it’s someone who’s involved in a gun club, perhaps they could do that somewhere else.”
You asked the honest, responsible citizens to leave Toronto, but not the drug dealers, gang members or murderers. 
Honestly, John, I’m ashamed to see what’s become of me in four short years.
Deeply ashamed. But I’m also hopeful. I hope I can remind you of who you were so you can be that strong voice of reason again.
I pray you find the courage to tackle the hard issues the way we used to, back in the days when we called out the evil elements of our society, not our most lawful citizens.
You had that courage once, John, remember? 
“Criminals and gang members don’t obey the law. Calling for such a ban isn’t leadership. It’s an empty gesture.”
It’s not too late to find it again. 
Yours truly, 
The Spirit of 2014 Candidate John Tory

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