Mayor teams up with topless interviewer
Oct 10, 2013 / 7:23 am
The Mayor of Kelowna has reunited with the blogger who famously flashed him during an August interview – and this time, she’s not the only one shucking a shirt.
Lori Welbourne’s topless stunt has been viewed more than 3.2 million times since it was uploaded to YouTube, but she told CTV News many have misinterpreted her intention and message.
Welbourne’s now hoping to set the record straight with a guest spot on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and has posted a new video to get the comedian’s attention.
Gray and Welbourne appear in their original interview on Aug. 24, 2013.
“I’ve been wildly misunderstood by the masses as a stupid, unprofessional, hypocritical, exhibitionist reporter,” Welbourne says in the lighthearted clip. “I am not a reporter.”
Mayor Walter Gray also took his share of criticism for allowing the headline-grabbing interview to continue in his office rather than walk out.
But Gray stands by his decision to take part, and has defied his critics by doing some disrobing of his own in support of Welbourne’s mission.
“I appreciate her ambition and I thought, why not?” he said. “I have a sense of humour. I believe as a politician, if you don’t have a sense of humour you don’t survive.”
In the latest video, Gray can be seen tossing open his shirt – though, like Welbourne, his chest is obscured by pixels.
Welbourne, who also hosts a radio program, said her original topless video accompanied a print column about International Go Topless Day, and wasn’t meant to be taken seriously.
In it, she refers to Gray as “Mr. Mayor” and asks him questions such as, “Are you aware that we are naked, bare naked, underneath our clothes?”
Despite the number of angry responses she’s received, she said she’s happy to have contributed to a dialogue about gender equality.
“It started conversations, and the conversations are still going and that’s a good thing,” Welbourne said.
She’s also penned an open letter to DeGeneres, which can be read on her blog.
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