To the Editor:
Freedom Convoy – Protest or Insurrection
In some circles, expressing support for the truckers in the Freedom Convoy is like expressing sympathy for the devil. But if I did honk my horn, I would be one of the roughly 30% of Canadians who do – or did, before they unloaded their Confederate flags and swastikas, hot-tubs and bouncy castles, and their horns on the sensitive ears of the citizens of Ottawa.
It might have started out as protest against governments’ freedom-eating vaccine mandates. But even before the Convoy got to the Alberta border it had morphed into something else. It had become a Convoy of Grievances ranging from Trudeau (and Liberals in general, and including Conservatives too, in spite of what Pierre Poilievre would like to believe) to immigrants and people of darker hues, to any hint of a restriction on their personal rights, even as they had fun infringing on the rights of their temporary neighbours.
But it also morphed into the shady territory of fake news and insurrection.
Truckers thought that after imposing their will (and their trucks) on the capital city, the government would invite them into Parliament for tea and talks about the future of democracy in Canada. Some thought they could somehow convince the Senate and the Governor General to dissolve Parliament and bring the leaders of the Convoy into the government … somehow. They thought the police were really on their side (and maybe they were), even as the cops moved in to arrest them.
This is self-deception on a grand scale and people usually need help to swallow these sort of fantasies. Aside from all the guff that comes out of Trump-land to the south of us, the Canadian content had to come from somewhere else.
That ‘somewhere else’ appears to be the self-styled leaders of the Convoy itself – a collection of ex-military, former RCMP officers, and alt-right rabble rousers. That the Convoy was so well-organized and incredibly well-funded speaks to their abilities. That most of them decamped before the police moved in speaks to their commitment to their troops.
And what of the ‘troops?’ Most are independents obliged by their jobs to drive for too many hours for too many long nights away from their families. As independents they are considered to be self-employed even if do they haul rigs for the same company year after year and maybe even wear a company shirt on their backs. Doesn’t matter – they still don’t get proper sick leave, or health insurance, or wages.
Ironically – if their target really was our current Liberal-Conservative-Corporate regime – they picked the right one. For that, over the last 50 years, is who constructed the rapacious economy we all now live in. But truck horns and fantasies aren’t enough to change that. And guns will bring something worse. That leaves the ballot box, the very place these folks feel the most unwelcome.
David McLarenNeyaashiinigmiing, ON