Toronto Mayor Rob Ford on Friday said
that he did not approve of a rainbow flag hoisted at City Hall.
Toronto is among the City Halls across
Canada that raised the rainbow flag to symbolize unity with LGBT
Russians and opposition to Russia's anti-gay law as the Winter
Olympics in Sochi got underway.
“It's not about someone's sexual
preference,” Ford is quoted as saying by the AP. “I do not agree
with putting up the rainbow flag. We should put our Canadian flag
Ford said he wanted the flag removed.
However, City spokeswoman Jackie DeSouza said the mayor does not have
the authority to independently make that decision. The flag is
expected to remain over the next two weeks.
The flap comes less than two days after
Ford, who is running for re-election despite admitting to crack
cocaine use, said that he would not attend this year's Gay Pride
“I'm not going to go to the Pride
parade. I've never been to a Pride parade. I can't change who I
am,” Ford said during a candidates' forum for October's mayoral
Doug Ford, a city councilor, insisted
his brother is not homophobic. Doug said that he's attended the
Pride parade but would not bring his kids because he doesn't “condone
middle aged men running down the middle of the street buck naked.”