As countries and provinces are scuttling pandemic protocols and restrictions, we here in Canada have the biggest insurrection of any country. A few hundred angry, right wing, mostly white men with big trucks are occupying the streets, neighborhoods and border crossings with their big rigs. They are flying flags other than the maple leaf, proclaiming some kind of ‘freedom’ and demanding the reversal of all vaccine mandates and pandemic health orders as well as the resignation of the prime minister and the dissolvement of parliament. This has been going on for two weeks now and neither the RCMP nor the government has done anything to stop or end this anarchy. I think that’s it in a nutshell. I wanted to know what Camp made of this whole situation and if he had any solutions in mind. I wasn’t disappointed.
‘First off, everybody here in Canada has a right to demonstrate and protest but that doesn’t include big 18-wheel tractor trailers stopping all other traffic and stinking up the streets, stopping essential movement of goods and costing people their livelihoods and businesses, as well as keeping entire neighbourhoods awake with their incessant honking and noise. Secondly, wanting to change the government by way of occupation is called insurrection, sedition and treachery. It’s anarchy.’
‘I saw an article by Mark Carney that said as much, calling for the full force of the law to be meted out to the perpetrators. I have to agree with him that this show of force by a very aggressive and well-funded bunch of rednecks is dangerous and has no place in a country based on the rule of law, adhered to by 99.99% of the population.’ I said.
‘If these were First Nations people closing borders and occupying downtown Ottawa, the cops would have been out within hours, not two weeks in. What if a few hundred snowbirds in their big RVs would have done the same thing; blocking borders and snarling traffic, protesting entry restrictions in both the US and Canada – the police would have been out in full force.’
‘And as Carney suggested, follow the money all the way to the US. Meanwhile Fox News is asking God to bless those ‘freedom fighters’ up there in Canada. It’s a mess and it won’t go away just by ignoring it as Trudeau’s three monkey strategy seems to be. Hear nothing, see nothing, say nothing.’
‘Yes, an appalling lack of leadership really. This is already way bigger than the Oka crises was in 1990. Over the course of three months, the Canadian government sent 2,000 police and 4,500 soldiers (an entire brigade), backed by armored vehicles, helicopters, jet fighters and even the Navy, to subdue several small Mohawk communities, killing two of them. And all over a golf course land dispute.’
‘You’re saying send in the army?’
‘I’m saying: arrest, charge and tow. If it takes military equipment to do the job, then yes, use it. Otherwise let the courts decide the fate of these so-called protesters and freedom fighters. If you or I park illegally, we get towed and impounded and have to pay a fine and a fee to get our cars back. The same should apply to those trucks and drivers. Hit them where it hurts. In the pocket book.’
‘I’m glad we’re not in charge Camp. I’m not sure if we could handle it.’
‘Yeah, you’re probably right. I could hardly handle a protest at the bookstore, never mind the country and as a volunteer politician and councilman I’m good at delegating, and offloading responsibility. Maybe I should stick to drinking beer and voicing my humble opinion in the confines of a public house.’
Hear, hear,’ Vicky said, having overheard that last remark while swapping out our empties. ‘I second that.’