The TownhallPolitics

Tyranny knocks on Canada’s door

By Mecca Fowler

Editor’s note: The opinions expressed here are those of the authors. View more opinion on ScoonTV. 

In the last three weeks, Canada has seen an uprising in protests in opposition to their vaccine “mandates.” What started as a trucker protest against COVID-19 vaccine mandates quickly led to a showing of support for people opposing vaccine mandates in other industries. 

The protesters dubbed the “Freedom Convoy 2022” have had one of the most successful, largest, and logistical protests we have seen in modern history. What was once brushed off as a “fringe minority” by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has manifested into something the media is finding hard to ignore. 

The convoy has been keeping itself afloat with donations pouring from the U.S. and Canada. It appears that the Freedom Convoy is not backing down anytime soon. It has been amazing to see how sufficiently they’ve sustained themselves, especially amid harsh criticism. They’ve faced a growing number of calls from government officials and others to end their protest, but they have vowed persistence. 

By and large, the protests have been mostly peaceful given the crowd size and organization of the operation. A reporter from Buzz Feed News was able to visit in person to detail how the protestors have been able to sustain themselves for the last three weeks. 

Although there have been no major reports of violence or disruption, Trudeau has set out to make life hard for the protestors and anyone associated with them. The plot to paint the protestors in a bad light started before the truckers ever descended into Ottawa. Trudeau and the police said they had reason to believe that the protest could get violent, but that largely has not manifested.  

He has used isolated incidents of alleged “racism” and “hate” to associate it with the larger sentiment of the group, too. Of course, any protest, as history has shown us, will have outliers and agitators. Take, for example, the Black Lives Matter protests during the summer of 2020. But it is painfully obvious that Trudeau’s attempts to link bad actors to the Freedom Convoy are a politically motivated smear meant to turn the public against them. 

That wasn’t it, either. First, GoFundMe announced that they were withholding the approximately $10 million dollars the protestors raised within a week until the protestors outlined a plan on how the money would be used. This was a peculiar statement that raised eyebrows because there is no mention of needing a “plan” anywhere on the GoFundMe terms and conditions page.

A few days later, GoFundMe announced that it received reports from local police about violence associated with the convoy and decided to refund donors.  

“We now have evidence from law enforcement that the previously peaceful demonstration has become an occupation, with police reports of violence and other unlawful activity,” GoFundMe said. It seems as if the platform was holding onto the funds until they could get a verifiable reason to cancel the campaign. 

Next, the protestors moved their fundraising efforts to GiveSendGo, a Christian crowdfunding platform. They’ve since raised $9 million dollars. Afterward, the Ontario government asked a Superior Court of Justice to grant a restraining order and halt the funds. GiveSendGo said it would not comply.  

“Know this! Canada has absolutely ZERO jurisdiction over how we manage our funds here at GiveSendGo,” a statement from GiveSendGo’s Twitter account read. “All funds for EVERY campaign on GiveSendGo flow directly to the recipients of those campaigns, not least of which is The Freedom Convoy campaign.” 

By Monday, GiveSendGo was hacked by a famous self-described cyberterrorist, the Washington Examiner reported. The platform acknowledged the hack but was back up and running on Tuesday. 

“We are in a battle. We didn’t expect it to be easy. This has not caused us to be afraid. Instead, it’s made it even more evident that we cannot back down,” a Facebook statement read. “Thank you for your continued support, prayers and the countless emails letting us know you are standing with us.” 

Now, the latest attempt to antagonize the peaceful protests has come from Trudeau himself. On Monday, Trudeau moved to invoke the Canadian Emergencies Act for the first time as his “last resort” response to the blockades. The move seeks to give the federal government more resources to do away with the protestors. 

But some legal experts are calling this move extreme, unconstitutional, and a step too far. Indeed, there were many steps Trudeau could’ve taken before invoking such a drastic policy. The most reprehensible part of all this is watching citizens of Canada cheer on the political persecution of their perceived opponents. 

Perhaps they don’t know the extent to which the government will crush the rights and freedoms of the protestors. Maybe they don’t know about the slashed tires, police damaging equipment, freezing of bank accounts, and everything else? 

Many people simply see a right-wing protest vs. the government when in fact it is not. They aren’t looking beyond the present at how allowing the government to enact such overreach can set a precedent for the next protest. It’s sad to watch the freedom convoy’s detractors stay silent as the government poses a threat to people who have hardly done anything violent. 

History has shown us that once we exacerbate government powers during “emergencies,” we rarely get those rights and freedoms back. We’re living in a literal case study. What have people gained during this global pandemic by giving governments the powers to lock them down, trample their businesses, and take away their livelihoods under the guise of “safety” and “security?” We’re no more safe or secure than when we started.  

The veil on how this all will end is thin. We’re giving Trudeau and other like-minded governments permission to become dictatorships. Governments should not be able to arbitrarily decide which protests are permissible depending on political ideology. That is not democracy.  

This whole situation escalated from protecting citizens from a deadly virus to stifling the freedom of the same citizens. The cheering of the government bullying its own citizens must stop. People on the side of the government right now should be wary of when the political pendulum swings back. It will not be pretty. 

You cannot stuff tyranny back in once it has slipped out. We would be wise to wake up now before it’s too late. 

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Mecca Fowler


Mecca Fowler is a passionate writer with a background in journalism and social media management. She is a free-speech advocate who hones in on her ability to reach across political spectrums to have engaging and transformative conversations to push the conscious of American culture forward.

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