A counter argument has surfaced as to why the local media is lavishing considerable coverage on mayor-in-waiting Freddie Francis; the younger brother of the city’s failed former mayor.
On the recent issue of banning smoking on such public property as beaches and parks, Francis was sought after for comment by just about every local scribbler and talker. The CTV outlet featured his comments. The CBC had him rationalizing the ban is, “… balanced and I think it’s reasonable.”
The Windsor Star put him in the prime position of ending its story. For it, he, “… summed up the consensus of council.”
To the unobservant, this could blatantly suggest Francis is the junior councillor who matters. But, is all this spotlight on Francis really to prepare the city for a future with him as its chief magistrate?
Or, is it something else, something the conspiracy theorists are wrapping around their minds as they meet in well-lit coffee shops?
According to their theory, the coverage of Francis might be nothing more than giving him enough rope to make a fool of himself and cripple his mayoral chances. To some, the boring, blanket reporting smacks of the adoration the traditional media once had for disgraced councillor Al Maghnieh.
Who can forget how the fourth estate fawned over him when he was the upstart councillor?
He failed them, quite miserably actually, quickly falling from grace when it was learned he was using his library credit card for personal expenses.
This is not to say Francis might be as nefarious. His slip-up might be quite simple.
The one piece of circumstantial evidence, so far, that has some siding with the conspirators, is a Francis quote newspaper columnist Anne Jarvis included in her April 26 perspective on the city introducing a tax levy to pay for the new mega-hospital.
It includes a rather peculiar thought to be attributed to anyone.
In normal circumstances, there is little doubt it should have been corrected by an eagle eyed editor. But, somehow, it was allowed to stand.
True to fashion, Jarvis ended her work with the apparent obligatory Freddie Francis comment. She opined, “… the new hospital would serve Windsor’s most vulnerable people.” She then stuck in this odd quote from Francis.
The most vulnerable in our community are the sick and the ill.
Cambridge Dictionaries Online advises ill, “… and sick are both adjectives that mean not in good health.”
More diehard practitioners of medical science might argue about differences, but to the man in the street, Cambridge is probably right for plain language folks.
Was Jarvis trying to telegraph something about Francis by including his incongruous comment?
Answers are few.
But, most non-malcontents simply smirk and suggest some time should be given to the circumstance to see if there is another shoe to drop. It is probably good advice.
Robert Tuomi can be heard at noon every Thursday co-hosting Talkin’ ‘Bout Windsor on CJAM 99.1 FM. Listen on demand to previous episodes or catch the discussion live and join in. It is also streamed online at CJAM.