Giorgio Mammoliti’s failed gotcha mission—showing up at the Dyke March with a video camera

Giorgio Mammoliti’s failed gotcha mission—showing up at the Dyke March with a video camera

(Image: Luke Hollins)

No, the man with the hand-held video camera pointed at Saturday’s Dyke March was not a creepy voyeur—it was just city councillor Giorgio Mammoliti. A few months back, Mammoliti led a campaign to revoke city funding if Pride Toronto organizers allowed the Queers Against Israeli Apartheid to participate in its annual parade. The folks at PrideQuAIA accommodated city hall’s concerns and pulled QuAIAthemselves from the event—but evidently Mammoliti wasn’t satisfied. When the group Dykes and Trans People for Palestine promised on their Facebook page to show up at the Dyke March in support of QuAIA, Mammoliti immediately sprung to action, threatening to bring a camera to the march and film any “in your face” challenge of council’s decision to outlaw such groups—which is exactly what he did.

Possibly inspired by the new Mission: Impossible movie, Mammoliti embarked on a recon operation of his own, and after allegedly recording defamatory anti-Israeli chants, he’s planning to meet with Mayor Rob Ford to discuss cutting funding from next year’s parade.

Regardless of the merits of Mammoliti’s cause, his vigilante tactics have us scratching our head. At the very least, he could send somebody else—perhaps with a slightly smaller profile—to do his dirty work. But better yet, he could have abandoned the whole not-so-candid camera bit all together. After all, for a public figure—a city politician no less—to show up camera in tow as a virtual one-man army against alleged hate-mongers reeks of good ol’-fashioned politicking.

Chalk this one up to yet another superfluous event overshadowing what was an otherwise wildly successful weekend for Pride in Toronto.

Councillor urges end to Pride funding after filming Dyke March [Toronto Star]
Anti-Isreal group promises Dyke March appearance [Toronto Sun]

UPDATE: Queers Against Israeli Apartheid, not Pride as we had originally reported, accommodated city hall’s concerns and pulled themselves from the Parade, even though the city manager ruled that the group’s inclusion in the Parade did not violate the city’s anti-discrimination policy. We regret the error.