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Frances leads a shoutdown of homophobe on a loudspeaker

Passersby join Frances to drown him out and make him leave

By Frances Sedgwick
True North Perspective
 
Frances Sedgwick's keen eye and ear for the human condition reveals the heart and soul of Parkdale in southwest Toronto, one of the country's most turbulent urban areas where the best traditions of human kindness prevail against powerful forces that would grind them down. True North Perspective proudly presents a column by writer Frances Sedgwick. Her critical observation combined with a tender sense of humour will provide you with something to think about ... and something to talk about.

18 May 2012 — I was so mad today as I took a break from attending to my husband who is in the emergency ward at Mount Sinai Hospital, I nearly ended up being a patient myself.
 
Taking a break while my husband was sleeping I went down to the Eaton Centre.
 
The northern tip of the Eaton Centre is Yonge and Dundas and Dundas Square. A popular place for events, activity and for people to congregate, talk and voice their opinions.
 
Across from Dundas Square I encountered several interesting spectacles. A women dressed in old Victorian garments and makeup bowing to passersby in a doll like fashion. I smiled as people stopped to take pictures with her.
 
Then I heard a voice over a loudspeaker denouncing homosexuals. As I got closer his ranting reminded me of the mad preacher in the U.S. I saw on TV saying, among other slanderous slurs that homosexuals will rot in hell.
 
Enraged I walked over and started yelling at him to stop promoting hatred. He kept on over a loudspeaker.  
 
I looked around and saw a guard in front of the Eaton Centre and went over to him.  I said can't you stop him from broadcasting that hatred? It is against the law.
 
The guard said he can't do anything because he is not speaking on Eaton Centre property.
 
He did add, you could call the police.
 
I looked around and couldn't find any police.  
 
Then someone pointed out two police officers on bicycles just north on Yonge Street waiting for the light to change. I waited and when the light changed and they rode down Yonge Street,  I tried to flag them down and yelled, Police, Police, but they didn't stop.
 
I turned back to this outrageous individual still broadcasting hatred over the loud speaker.
 
I continued to yell at him to stop! stop!
 
I talked to spectators standing around. "This is how fascism starts, we have to stop this
promotion of hatred it is against our human rights."
 
A young black man came up to me and said he was gay and started yelling at this "preacher of venom" along with myself.
 
Another spectator said this individual had been speaking here on the corner for months.
 
Apparently he had been warned by the police because no one is allowed to use a megaphone to promote their ideas on the street.
 
Someone else said there are always police officers around this area.
 
I said when you need them they are not here. At least for this particular reason.
 
I said it is interesting when we have peaceful protests promoting peace, equality, human rights, friendship there are hundreds of cops watching and intimidating us.
 
But somehow an individual can stand on the corner with a loudspeaker promoting hatred and no cops.
 
But citizens did put an end to this person's ranting of hatred.
 
I went back and continued to yell at this guy to stop! stop! others gathered around, joined in, and he folded up his equipment and left.
 
I will be back tomorrow to make sure he is folded up permanently.

My Parkdale

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