A curious thing happens with the twitter account of the bigoted, racist hate-filled Republican Presidential nominee, Donal Trump. He’ll tweet something outlandish, something hateful and self-serving, then a few hours later, he’ll change his tune and act like a human being being.
You can see this phenomena in action with the murder of Dwyane Wade’s cousin. First, he used the tragedy to tout himself and his agenda, then a few hours later, expressed condolences.
There’s a theory that you can tell when The Donald is actually tweeting and when it’s his staff. (The theory suggests that whenever a tweet comes from an Android device, it’s Trump; when it’s from an iPhone, it’s his staff.) Whether that’s true or not, it seems like someone shakes some sense into him after he pulls his usual crap.
Enter Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson.
On Thursday, Nusrat Jahan was killed by a truck driver. He right-hooked her as she was trying riding in the Laurier bike lane. As reported by CBC, and as noticed by many, many people on Twitter, the mayor’s initial response was to tout his own accomplishments and his agenda:
That’s right. A woman was dead, and he was touting his record spending on bicycling infrastructure.
He was also bragging about a bike route that was hacked up in order to preserve parking.
And he was bragging about how the city wasn’t going to do any more, but he’d get the federal government to do his fucking job for him.
Well, I guess someone suggested to the mayor that this wasn’t the best way to respond to a body in the street. Three hours later, he had more to say:
And then two minutes after that, he finally decided to say something about the dead woman:
If that was it, it would have been bad. He did what others ridicule Trump for doing, and deserves ridicule for his callous, self-aggrandizing response to death. But he couldn’t help himself. He had to keep going…
This is a lie. Booth Street. Kent Street. Bank Street. Innes Road. O’Connor Street. Huntmar Drive. Our streets have been intentionally designed to be dangerous under his watch. He is not trying to make our streets the safest in Canada.
Further, he’s not trying to start a dialogue. He has willfully eschewed the dialogue. People have been trying to make bicycling and walking in this city safer for years, and he just likes to respond by touting his “record spending” and ignoring everything else.
You know who’s having this dialogue? The people behind Bike Ottawa, the people behind Pedal Power, Eric Darwin, David Reevely, Metro Ottawa, Joanne Chiannello, Charles Akben-Marchand, Alex deVries, Kathryn Hunt, Lana Stewart and whole ton of other Ottawa residents.
They do it on blogs, on Twitter, on Facebook, at community events and public consultations. They talk to the media. They write their councillors. They write the mayor. They’re banging the hell out of this drum, and the mayor has refused to listen.
So don’t be fooled. The mayor’s initial response was the honest one. By his actions, he doesn’t believe in promoting safety. By his words, he doesn’t believe in dialogue.
Nusrat is dead, but he has made a record investment in bicycling infrastructure.