Letters to the Editor for Nov. 4, 2014

Negative campaign ads not fit for community newspapers

I was born and raised in the beaches and have been reading Beach Metro for nearly my full 23 years.

When I opened the latest issue (October 21st) and saw the attack ad against Mary Margaret McMahon I did a double take – I thought I had picked up a satire newspaper by accident. I am appalled that you would allow such an ad to run in your newspaper.

I want to make it clear that I am in no way associated with the McMahon campaign and at the time was undecided as to who I would vote for. But that does not change how I feel about this ad.

First of all it makes Brian Graff look petty and unprepared, resorting to such tactics as running a smear campaign in a “non-profit community resource.”

But it also made me question the integrity of the Beach Metro, which I had never even thought of doing prior to reading that issue.

Beach Metro has always been special to me, and I have many clippings saved from when I played hockey at Williamson Road PS, and from playing sports and being involved in student council at Malvern CI.

To see such an ad in a publication that I hold a fondness towards is very disappointing. I would think such tactics would be reserved for the pages of other media outlets.

I hope this is not the beginning of a very negative trend, otherwise I will no longer pick up a copy of Beach Metro and would urge others to do the same.

Scott Macdonald


Open thank you to market organizers

We’d like to give thanks for two very creative and community-minded women in the Fairmount Park Community: Susana Molinolo and Kim Antonius.

Throughout the spring, summer and fall they have coordinated a wonderful farm-to-table weekly market of fresh foods, flowers, wines, craft and cultural demonstrations, prepared artisanal foods, musical performances, and more. They have been supportive of vendors, acted on customer comments and suggestions and tirelessly promoted the Wednesday afternoon market through all kinds of weather. They have also attracted a strong team of volunteers of all ages who turn up week after week to help out.

We have been so impressed with the sense of community that the Fairmount Farm Market has generated. Thank you Susana and Kim for all you have done to make our neighbourhood a better place.

Gail Ferguson and Joseph Romain


Former trustee crossed the line

I am a Grade 9 student at Malvern Collegiate Institute and a member of MSASS (Malvern Students Against Sexual Stereotyping).

Former TDSB trustee Sam Sotiropoulos, who was defeated in the Oct. 27 election, recently tweeted some incredibly homophobic and transphobic things. These included the opinion that being transgendered is a mental illness, and links to an article calling the pride parade a “freak show.”

These comments were shocking and offensive to me, especially seeing as he added the hashtag #TDSB, drawing the school board into his ignorance. As a trustee, it was Mr. Sotiropoulos’ responsibility to represent the views of the board, and based on those tweets, he failed to do so.

Sotiropoulos represented several schools and hundreds of students, many of whom identify as LGBT, and he failed to uphold everything the board claims to stand for in fairness and equality.

Not only does this man represent high schools, he represents elementary and middle schools, where many people first discover their gender-identity and sexuality.

Recently a group of MSASS representatives, including myself, attended a meeting of the school board trustees at North York Civic Centre, where we spoke about the issue.

When asked to at least make a formal apology, Trustee Sotiropoulos refused, saying that we students were being influenced by teachers because we are unable to formulate our opinions.

People need to be aware of this problem, and they need to know just who is making decisions for the school board.

Danielle Truesdale

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