Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Fact #21: There's no evidence that Rob Ford is actually in rehab


It's true. On April 30th Rob Ford announced that he was taking a leave of absence, saying:
"Today, after taking some time to think about my own well-being, how to best serve the people of Toronto and what is in the best interests of my family, I have decided to take a leave from campaigning and from my duties as mayor to seek immediate help."
Ford travelled to Chicago the following day, but on May 6th but it was revealed that Ford had been turned back by US Customs and Immigration and returned to Canada. He has not been seen or heard from since.

Rob Ford's lawyer said that it was his "understanding" that Ford was in rehab, but did not provide specifics. Doug Ford said on May 6th that Ford was in rehab, but refused to provide any details such as where his brother was, how long he would be there and what treatments he was receiving. Instead, Doug said that the public needed to trust him that the story was true.

At no time has Ford or his family ever admitted that he has an addiction issue, nor have they ever admitted that the mayor abuses narcotics such as crack. The statement on April 30th did not say that Ford was entering a rehab program, and Doug Ford has declined to back up his assertion with any facts. “He’s in rehab, and that is all everyone cares about. "

Maybe Rob Ford is in rehab. Maybe he's not. We just don't know.

Why should I care?

Rob Ford needs help. He clearly has serious drug and alcohol issues, and more than likely is an alcohol and drug addict. However, he has never admitted to an addiction, has repeatedly denied that his drinking was a problem, and has never said that he would undergo rehab treatment for these issues.

If Rob Ford were a private citizen then his medical issues would be a private matter. However, not only is Ford currently the mayor, he is also running for re-election. The public deserves to know whether Ford is fit for office, and evidence that he is moving beyond his current challenges should be a precondition for returning to office, now or after the next election.

The Ford family has a rather complex relationship with the truth. The language in Ford's statement is very similar in tone to his "I am not a user of crack cocaine" declaration from a year ago, and we all know how that turned out. Employing weasel words for a straightforward issue only complicates matters and increases the likelihood that Ford is not doing anything substantive about his health.

On the other hand, if you're Doug this all good news. If Plan A was to re-elect Rob, then Plan B is to have Doug take his place on the mayoral ballot. The longer Rob disappears and fails to get help, the better prepared Doug will be to step in fill his brother's spot. How convenient.

How do I know you're not lying?


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