Clayton Ruby wanted to be a sociologist. Lucky for us, he chose law.

Since we were 11 years old, we knew Clayton Ruby, who passed away this week at the age of 80.

His first outing was around 1953, when he took a cab to the Royal Winter Fair. Clay paid with a credit card and with another person at the steakhouse. No one I know had even heard of credit cards. These were like the first ever.

I had the money, but it was complicated. His father, Lou, whom he loved dearly, owned a series of scandalous sheets or tabloids such as The Flash, Hush, and Midnight. (At the time, there was no possibility that Jews could control mainstream newspapers such as The Star and The Globe and Mail.

Cray found an elegant way to resolve that conflict. He spoke for and against outsiders, minorities and even criminals in a very respectable way. As a prominent civil rights attorney, he appeared before the Supreme Court wearing the Order of Canada. He maintained the family tradition of an outsider in a new and original way.

He used to visit me when I lived in New York in the 1960s. He had already made his mark in Toronto, on the streets of Yorkville where he advised children on their rights and had become part of the radical left. My own life was falling apart in all directions. he was the perfect friend. He said I was just lining up the ducks — it would work.

When I got back he became my lawyer and I needed one. He got me out of jail twice late at night. He was arrested during a strike by the union I worked for. The officer had promised to “visit” my cell once the other picketers were released. He had gone fishing, but he returned in a hurry.

I saw him at work during the appeal of that case – I received a short prison sentence – and it was artistic. He had barely touched it, and as the trial unfolded, he put together snatches of evidence and law into a stunning tapestry to persuade the judge to release me on a suspended sentence. Clay said when you are completely innocent. He wrote a standard law textbook on sentencing.

I wore one of his fine three-piece suits to the trial. He gave them to me after limited use. It was part of the strategy. For the first time in my life, court officials and other people called me sir.

During the summer, he picked up his daughters, Kate and Emma, ​​to camp in Algonquin Park and spent the night at my cottage nearby. Emma, ​​she said, rarely seems relaxed. It differed from his own rather opulent “cottage”, in which he organized a constant stream of guests, picking vegetables from the garden and setting the table. It was an endless summer.

One time my five or six year old son Gideon asked me, “Why are you friends with him?” He has seen us discuss many things, including Israel. I said he saved me from being beaten by a cop, and I knew him from time immemorial. Clever little Gideon said thoughtfully.

He originally wanted to be a sociologist, based on a classic study of our community called “Crestwood Heights” when we were kids. When that didn’t work, he decided to try law. What a surprise for Canada.

His children and grandchildren will miss him dearly, but he will be deep in their hearts. was shared with him.

This column was originally Toronto Star.

Clayton Ruby wanted to be a sociologist. Lucky for us, he chose law.

Source link Clayton Ruby wanted to be a sociologist. Lucky for us, he chose law.

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