Posted by: Hannah | 08/07/2012

a call to action

There is a municipal election in Halifax this October.

It should represent a big shake-up. The council has been shrunk from 23 seats to 16. The long-time mayor is leaving under a cloud of scandal – and several incumbents are tainted by the same events that eventually forced the mayor to concede running again was probably a bad idea.

Municipal politics are getting more media coverage than they have in a long time. Federally and provincially we’ve got majority governments for the first time in years – they’re going to do what they do, and it seems like there is a certain sense of inevitability to things that mean journalists are getting more interested in events at the local level.

All of these events, taken together, mean that there are lots of new faces and voices running for city council. Which is great – it’s good for democracy and hopefully good for the city, too. It’s very easy to become a candidate, too – you just need to be a resident of your district for the six months prior to the election, and get your paperwork in on time. That’s it! (Of course to run a credible campaign is a lot more work.)

Unfortunately, the very openness that makes the process so egalitarian also means that Complete Fucking Nutters With Axes to Grind can run for council, too. Some incredibly ill-informed blowhards are already in the running, both for regular council seats and the mayor’s chair. And after Toronto elected the unbelievably stupid, obnoxious, homophobic, culture-hating and possibly racist Rob Ford last year, we all know that anything is possible when there is only 35% voter turnout.

This morning, this rolled through my Twitter feed – it was posted as a Facebook status by a candidate for Peninsula North named Trent Peacock. In case you can’t / don’t want to click the link, it reads as follows:

“Fat people deserve to be mocked and insulted in a society where they will inevitably cost society more. There is no excuse for TRYING to be in better shape by eating less or eating better. I say this as someone who is forced to eat shit food AND has an autoimmune disease that predesignates me to being a fatass until I am dead and I am in *reasonable* shape.”

And then my head exploded.

Here we have a candidate for public office who – unprompted and with no context to speak of – proudly announced ON THE INTERNET that he advocates bullying and shaming overweight people for the good of society as a whole. Or at least, all overweight people who aren’t him, because of course he’s only fat because he has a medical condition. Oh, and is apparently locked in a basement somewhere and force-fed chicken nuggets, or something.

Where to even begin? He advocates bullying. He has an imperfect grasp of grammar and syntax. He swears (I swear too, all the time. But you can be sure that were I running for public office I would not do so except in the comfort and privacy of my own home). He does not understand that everything you put online is public record.

Oh, and when he was called on his offensive and bullying attitude? HE DOUBLED DOWN.

“Why should I respect people who set themselves up for 40+ preventable diseases?”

“Not when millions are needlessly wasted on something that costs $0 to resolve.”

“And hugging them into acceptance is doing the same?”

“FTR, smart people don’t deserve to be bullied, either.”

Here we have a candidate who made an ignorant, reactionary, bullying comment on his public Facebook page – and refused to even consider the idea that he might have done something stupid when he was confronted by no fewer than a dozen REGISTERED VOTERS ON SOCIAL MEDIA WTFBBQ.

***

So I did something I never do on Twitter, which is I Got Involved. I retweeted. I called him on his BS. I tried answering his points logically until it became painfully clear that the Toddler Brigade are better at listening and being nice than he is.

And I’m spreading the word.

I know I have many local readers, even though none of you comment much. If you are in the Peninsula North district, please consider voting for one of the other candidates, and spread the word about Trent Peacock. He’s a bully and when asked what his policy ideas are, he blew us off by saying he was too busy at work to articulate them (not too busy to argue with a bunch of people on Twitter, though!) He would not be an adornment to your district or to our council. Oh, and if you or anyone you care about is overweight, he believes that you should be publicly mocked and shamed until you put down that cheeseburger, fatty-fatty-two-by-four.

Click here for contact information for all three declared candidates in District 8 – Peninsula North.

 

 

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Responses

  1. love it!

  2. The campaign literature writes itself. “Vote Trent Peacock for Council – “You look fat in those jeans”


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