Yesterday was the deadline for declaring one’s candidacy in municipal elections in Ontario. While the mayoral race in the city of Toronto seems to have been going on forever, Friday September 12 was the official date to declare whether any candidate was staying in or dropping out. Two prominent candidates, Karen Stintz and David Socknacki, had made that choice already, citing low polling results as being too much to overcome so late in the process. But yesterday had a greater change than anyone anticipated. Current mayor Rob Ford was dropping out of the race, and was being replaced by his brother, councillor Doug Ford.
As one might predict, the Toronto media was aflame last night with this news. Something truly unanticipated had happened. This change of events was the result of the discovery earlier in the week of a tumour in Rob Ford’s abdomen. Doctors are waiting for the results of a biopsy to decide treatment, but this shocking turn brought Mayor Ford to the decision to pull out of the race and ask his big brother to take his place.
So the words of another city councillor, Josh Matlow, ring true at this moment. He is quoted in todays’ Globe and Mail as saying: “The one certainty about mayoral politics today is that nothing is certain.” Matlow has that right. What seemed to be down to a three-way race between Olivia Chow, John Tory and Rob Ford changed quickly to a different race, with a new candidate who has to quickly establish himself as the one to fulfill a role he has never sought.
What do we expect next? Matlow is correct again here. We really don’t know for certain what to expect – and that’s alright. It makes the race all that much more interesting and exciting.
Uncertainty is not the most comfortable way to live, but life is full of uncertainty. Mayoral races are just one example. In my next post, I’ll speak further on the place of uncertainty in our decision-making.
© Brian F. Reynolds BFRspace 2014
“What do you expect? The question you need to ask!” is now available in paperback for $20 (Can) from Scarlet Cord Press (.).