Last week after Rob Ford appeared on Conrad Black’s Zoomer TV interview show and insinuated that Toronto Star reporter Daniel Dale was a pedophile, Dale threatened legal action. Dale served Ford with a libel notice last Thursday night with the caveat that if Ford apologized before the weekend was over, he would drop the suit. When Dale received no such apology, he told reporters that the suit would proceed as planned.
Perhaps sensing the vicious reality of a lawsuit, today on the council floors, Ford shoehorned an apology to Dale into a council debate on water. “I have no issue with Mr. Dale personally. I understand that he is an employee in the very competitive news business,” he said. “And must do as his superiors instruct him.”
The non-apology apology continued. “I do take issue with his bosses at the Toronto Star to put him and I into this situation,” he continued. “I do not mean to insinuate anything about Mr. Dale personally in my interview with Mr. Black. I certainly did not intend to suggest that he is a pedophile. I was merely commenting on the thoughts that went through my mind on the night of May 2012–before I had any idea that person my neighbour told me he saw peering over my fence was a reporter on assignment from the Toronto Star.”
Ford wrapped up his Dale speech by saying, “It is unfortunate that the word I did not say has been ascribed to me by the media, but I wish to sincerely apologize again to Mr. Dale if my actual words have caused him any harm or personal offence. And if Mr. Daniel Dale is here, I want to personally apologize to him.”
Dale has not stated whether or not he will drop the suit following Ford’s remarks.