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The Canadian Revolution Is Growing
Make No Mistake, This Is A Revolution
Six days after the Freedom Convoy first arrived in Ottawa, they are still there—and they are expected to increase in number this weekend.
Ottawa police say they're anticipating the "Freedom Convoy" protest that has snarled traffic and filled downtown Ottawa with relentless noise to grow again this weekend as more demonstrators return and that policing may not bring the protest to an end.
Moreover, it has been abundantly clear that the convoy has always encompassed more than just truckers. Even the New York Times acknowledged a number of protestors arrived in Ottawa on Saturday in cars and other small vehicles—hardly the vehicles truckers would use in a protest.
Private cars and pickup trucks greatly outnumbered the heavy trucks that made up the convoy in its first days. Throughout Saturday, the vehicles clogged the streets in and around Parliament, most of them bearing flags or signs denouncing public health measures related to the pandemic.
Ottawa A Peaceful Protest
Surprisingly, the Ottawa occupation has been peaceful and virtually without violence, despite the Freedom Convoy members numbering in the tens of thousands.
But [Ottawa Police Chief Peter] Sloly said Monday that things could be much worse.
“It could have led to significant and severe injuries, and it could have led to the loss of life,” he said. “None of that has occurred over the last four days.
“No riots, no injuries, no deaths. That is a measure of success for any jurisdiction in Canada, and quite frankly anywhere in the world.”
This stands in marked contrast to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's assessment of the Freedom Convoy:
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has come out strongly condemning the behaviour displayed by some participants in the trucker convoy protests that continue in downtown Ottawa, saying he and the government will not be intimidated by them and indicating no plans to engage with the demonstrators.
“Over the past few days, Canadians were shocked and frankly, disgusted by the behaviour displayed by some people protesting in our nation's capital,” Trudeau said during a national address from the National Capital Region.
“I want to be very clear, we are not intimidated by those who hurl insults and abuse at small business workers, and steal food from the homeless. We won't give in to those who fly racist flags. We won't cave to those who engage in vandalism or dishonour the memory of our veterans.”
Trudeau's rhetoric is also somewhat at odds with the messaging of local Ottawa politicians:
Mayor Jim Watson said the city is “doing everything possible to bring this to an end peacefully,” and said the protesters had worn out their welcome.
“You’ve had moment, your 15 minutes,” he said. “Time to move on, give back our city to our residents and you go on your way to your community.”
Ontario Premier Doug Ford was disturbed by reports of swastikas among the convoy members, but himself stopped short of calling for the convoy to disband, leaving that message to come from one of his cabinet ministers:
Ford did not urge the protesters to go home, but his top Ottawa cabinet minister did. Lisa MacLeod tweeted that "the residents and families of Ottawa need to return to work and school."
"To the protestors remaining - you’ve been heard - please go home."
Yet the Convoy remains, and is apparently growing.
Toronto Convoy Gathering In The Works
While the Freedom Convoy continues to occupy downtown Ottawa, a similar convoy is being organized for this coming weekend in Toronto.
Toronto police say that they are aware of a planned trucker protest against vaccine mandates set for the city this weekend and are monitoring the situation.
A flyer circulating on social media suggests that a Toronto "Convoy for Freedom" demonstration will take place at Queen's Park, beginning at 12 p.m. on Saturday.
Organizers are asking supporters to show up at one of seven Greater Toronto Area meeting points before making their way downtown.
Justin Trudeau's “fringe minority” apparently has been growing, if these reports pan out.
The Border Blockade: Farmers To The Rescue
As I noted earlier, support for the Freedom Convoy had already appeared in Alberta, at the US-Canada border crossing near Coutts.
While initially just a protest, over the weekend it escalated into a blockade of the main highway.
Semi-trucks, cars and farm equipment started filling Highway 4 south of Lethbridge on Saturday, in support of a national convoy to Ottawa with a stated goal of repealing a federal mandate requiring unvaccinated Canadian truckers re-entering Canada from the United States to get tested for COVID-19 and to quarantine. Some participating in both protests have expanded that goal, demonstrating against health orders and the federal government as a whole.
The ensuing standoff with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police remains ongoing, as the RCMP has struggled to defuse the situation. Although they have refrained from a crackdown-style raid with mass arrests, the RCMP has also drawn a firm line about the criminal nature of an intentional blockade of the crossing, per their official statement.
A Highway is considered essential infrastructure. It is unlawful to wilfully obstruct, interrupt or interfere with the construction, maintenance, use or operation of any essential infrastructure in a manner that renders the essential infrastructure dangerous, useless, inoperative or ineffective as per the Critical Infrastructure Defence Act of Alberta. Anyone who actively blocks a highway—or aids, counsels or directs a highway to be blocked—may be subject to arrest and charge under this act.
It should be noted the cited Critical Infrastructure Defence Act does call for criminal sanctions for a blockade such as is now taking place.
The RCMP yesterday acknowledged that the protestors had allowed a single lane of traffic to pass, to address the needs and concerns of the local community of Coutts:
This afternoon, in response to concerned citizens in the area of Coutts, the participants in the blockade made the decision to open a lane going northbound and southbound on Highway 4 near the Coutts border. This allows for area residents to have freedom of movement, school bussing that was impacted to be reinstated, emergency services to provide full services, border access and the flow of goods and services to resume.
The Alberta RCMP acknowledges the work that is being done.
However, the most dramatic turn of events has been an influx of area farmers joining the protesters, and breaching a barricade the RCMP had imposed, preventing even food and supplies from reaching the convoy.
The RCMP tried to establish a barricade to keep other truckers and protesters from joining the ongoing protest in Coutts. That didn’t stop supporters from around the province who made their way to Coutts by rolling right through the RCMP barricades to join their fellow countrymen and provide more support to their ongoing protest for freedom.
Despite the undeniable reality of the Coutts border blockade being a violation of Alberta law, the prevailing sympathies are apparently with the protesters, not the RCMP.
The Consent Of The Governed
As Thomas Jefferson so eloquently observed in the Declaration of Independence,
Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed
The reliance upon the “consent of the governed” is fundamental to all government, good or bad, democratic or authoritarian. Whenever a government—any government—loses that consent, it falls. It may fall peacefully, or it may fall violently, but it is absolutely certain that it will fall.
If there is one defining aspect to “color revolutions”, it is that, through the weight of accumulated protest and civil disobedience, a government is toppled by the unambiguous withdrawal of that consent of the governed.
For the Coutts Border Blockade to be attracting local support despite the obvious legal issues with action shows a significant body of the Canadian people no longer cede the moral high ground to the RCMP. They are withdrawing their consent to be governed.
For the Ottawa Occupation to be continuing to pull in additional demonstrators, despite the likelihood that protest itself also runs afoul of at least provincial law, also shows a significant body of the Canadian people no longer cede the moral high ground to the government. They are withdrawing their consent to be governed.
To call the events in Canada “fluid” would be an understatement, and no doubt before I finish writing this new information will alter the landscape yet again.
Yet this much seems undeniable: despite the assurances from Ontario minister Lisa MacLeod and Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson, the Freedom Convoy members, in Ottawa and in Coutts, do not believe they have been heard.
By their actions, Convoy members, and a growing number of their fellow Canadians, are withdrawing their consent to be further governed by same entities that imposed arbitrary and largely unscientific mandates and lockdowns over the COVID-19 pandemic. They are withdrawing their consent to be further governed by artless and feckless politicians who shamelessly demonized and denigrated all those who, for whatever reason, declined to accept “vaccines” which did exactly nothing to halt the pandemic, while compiling a track record of injury and adverse events that is charitably described as “deeply disturbing”.
As the world is increasingly done with pandemic panic, Canadians are likewise increasingly done with the politicians and bureaucrats who foisted that panic upon a trusting nation.
In Ottawa, in Toronto, in Coutts, the Canadian Revolution is unfolding as the collective cry of ordinary Canadians: “Enough! No more!”