Kraychik — Fact Vs Fiction: On the Ground with Canada’s Freedom Convoy

“It’s nothing but smiles, positive feelings, support, love, admiration, resistance, and liberation thoughts,” Dave from Montreal told me with a faint Quebecois accent on Wednesday, describing the ongoing rallies in the nation’s capital against Chinese coronavirus directives.

Why Are Anti-vaccine Truckers From Across Canada Converging on Ottawa?

A caravan of anti-vaccine Canadian truckers and supporters is its route to Ottawa, its capital.

The “Freedom Convoy” was organized in reaction to a vaccine mandate that required trucks to be fully vaccinated against the coronavirus before crossing the land border between Canada and the United States.

According to the Canadian Anti-Hate Network, a non-profit that monitors hate groups, “the ‘Freedom Convoy’ is nothing more than a vehicle for the far-right.” “It’s about truckers, they say… However, you’ll find Islamophobia, antisemitism, racism, and incitement to violence among its organizers and promoters.

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Scenes at the Rally

Dave flew to Canada’s capital to assist truckers and other protesters in front of Parliament Hill. He teamed up with an elderly lady to provide coffee, hot chocolate, varied protein bars, soups, sandwiches, and whatever else was donated to the rally’s participants.

Truckers began arranging convoys from Western Canada the week before protesting the federal government’s decision to impose a 14-day “quarantine” on “unvaccinated” Canadian truck drivers re-entering the country by land. Foreign truckers who have not been vaccinated are now being denied entry to Canada.

The mood at Saturday’s rally in downtown Ottawa was upbeat, joyous, and contagious. Despite daytime temperatures of -20 degrees Celsius (approximately -4 degrees Fahrenheit), Canadians who came out to protest human rights violations in the name of “public health” were upbeat.

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On Wednesday, tens of thousands of people gathered on and around Parliament Hill; many of them wore enormous smiles on their faces. On a typical weekday, the tragic scenes of masked government personnel scuttling about the neighborhood contrasted sharply with the demonstrators.

Social closeness has taken the place of anti-social distancing. In terms of density, the sea of people on Wellington Street matched the thick crowds witnessed on Canada Day, similar to a crowded nightclub or concert.

Thousands of people were only a few inches apart. When wearing a costly and thick winter jacket, walking past someone smoking a cigarette was nerve-wracking.

Participants were rejecting the belief that fellow humans are disease carriers.

Dave pondered that Canadians had a reputation for being overly accommodating. “We’ve been recognized worldwide for being overly sorry for something,” he explained, “and I’m weary of being sorry.”

Fact Vs Fiction
Fact Vs Fiction

What Do the News Outlets Have to Say?

News outlets depicted a fictional parallel universe that was separated from the reality of the rally. Without presenting any visual or video proof, the Associated Press characterized Swastikas, Confederate flags, and desecrations of war memorials marred Saturday’s rally.

Protesters were accused of stealing food from homeless shelters, waving swastikas, and – gasp! – going maskless into a Tim Hortons, according to CTV operatives.

I asked Shanna, who lives nearby Ottawa and has gone to the protests every day since Saturday, how she felt about the mockery of protesters by the news media and politicians.

“Just come down,” she said. Come down any day – weekend or weekday – and take a look around. Canada will undoubtedly be visible here. Everyone is here in unison, and there is nothing but love. I’ve been looking for this ‘hatred’ for five days now. I can’t seem to locate it.”

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It was impossible to ignore the positive vibes. There were Canadian flags all over the place. There was a vivid sense of patriotism in the air.

Given his dark coloring, I couldn’t resist questioning Daz, another demonstrator, about news media tropes casting the Freedom Convoy as driven by “white supremacy.”

Prime Minister’s Remarks Against the Rallies

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has referred to opponents of his policy as a “fringe minority” of “anti-vaxxer mobs” who carry out “racist, sexist insults.” He questioned the IQ of anti-vaccination activists, calling them “very often misogynistic and racist.”

“White supremacy is a red herring in general,” Daz stated. “They always bring up the term ‘white supremacy’… I’m not going to be decieved by these kinds of stories. Do I appear to be a ‘white supremacist’ if you see me?”

Daz explained why he was demonstrating. He stated, “I’m here to assist the Freedom Convoy 2022 because I believe in the message.” “I believe that freedom of speech, expression, religion, and assembly should all be honored.

Those are the 3 fundamental [and] sovereign rights that we have as people beings in Canada, whether jabbed or not, and the government has completely trampled on them.”

He went on to say that the government’s continuous constraints on human liberty are “unconstitutional” and “inhumane.”

Trudeau mocked the protesters on Monday, calling them “conspiracy theorists” wearing “tinfoil hats.”

Trudeau went on to say that those protesting the redesigning of society in the name of the Chinese coronavirus pandemic are unworthy of attention.

“I’ve also decided not to go to protests that have used harsh rhetoric, violence against fellow citizens, and a contempt – not only for science but also for frontline health workers,” Trudeau said.

As reported by the news media, the prospect of “violence” at the Freedom Convoy never materialized.

“Let me say it again, no injuries, no deaths, no riots in the nation’s capital in the last four days, even though we have a global cause, a national protest ten of thousands of people, from a wide variety of causes, who’ve gathered to actively demonstrate 24 hours a day,” Ottawa Chief of Police Peter Sloly said on Monday.

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