Weekend rallying point?

WE ARE REPORTING and take no pleasure in the recent turn of events.

It has come to this:

Stephen Guibeault, former radical activist (and proud of it) is on Team Trudeau’s point guard. As the federal Minister of the Environment & Climate Change he’s rewarded with close to 200 million dollars to carry out ‘the climate plan’ the very day the Prime Minister announced emergency measures

Chrystia Freeland, Canada’s Deputy Prime Minister, in a scolding tone warns the “presumed guilty” that banks & insurance companies have been instructed to freeze assets of anyone connected with the Freedom Convoy (no matter how remote the connection, or the implications of freezing assets of people you don’t like or disagree with).

The bouncy castle atmosphere of Ottawa (annoying to locals yet relatively peaceful), scattered by the the blunt instrument of the Emergencies Act contrasts—starkly—with the federal government’s response to Canadians who recently burned churches to the ground and blockaded railways out of utter frustration.  

The preferences of a prime minister and his fellow travellers in office is clear for those who care to see.

What if Mr. Trudeau had risen above the taunts and the mocking, and taken the time and care to understand what the protestors’ cries for freedom were really about—not to embolden the opportunists looking for trouble; not to enable the extremists (who would surely have been known to CSIS, the country’s security and intelligence agency); and not to capitulate—but to understand what actually drove these ordinary Canadians to protest.  There was no bent knee for these people. 

Instead, it’s become a polarized and entrenched battle of wills. Protestors mock government leaders and government leaders respond with taunts—pushing the red-hot buttons of freedom-loving protestors and their allies across the country. It’s like blocking a conversation on Twitter because you don’t like what you are hearing. 

Certainly, using children as human shields is deplorable but the message being delivered to protestors is one that challenges the very essence of their appeals for freedom:  The state will be coming for your children if you don’t see things our way.

It’s no longer a protest about vaccine mandates. It is a rally of patriots (from their point of view) who object to the radical makeover Trudeau has enacted in his quest for Canada to become the “first post national state.” 

And now it’s the weekend. A Family Day weekend. Ottawa has spoken. And if you are of a certain mind, might you think they’re coming for you, your bank account, and your children if you disagree…

Add to the mix the goading & mocking…


This column is the consensus opinion of the writers Donna Kennedy-Glans & Don Hill. If you haven’t already, please subscribe to BEYOND POLARITY — scroll down on your phone or tablet, or look to the right in the panel beside this post. Enter your email to FOLLOW, a wheel spins, hamsters get fed.

9 thoughts on “Weekend rallying point?

  1. Truck off, eh…

    Nice try, I would give Trudeau vastly more points than the quivering quislings in the Crapservative Party who alternately waltzed with, paid lip service to, or just avoided dealing with, the rabid nut bars in the Free Dumb Convoy

    1. Tim, I simply don’t know how to express my total disagreement with your perspective so I therefore will politely leave it at that.

  2. I must first state my biases and my bona fides – tiresome, I know. I am fully vaccinated and “of an age” with the famous so-morbidities. I am therefore a supporter of vaccination and a likely victim if I get a severe form of this illness.

    Now, having said all of that, I am – and have been for some time – full of disdain for how the various governments (yes, plural, but especially the federal government) have handled the Covid thingy. They really, really messed up.

    The feds knew about the Ottawa convoy for quite some time before it got underway, they were aware of it as it went across Canada and they – and their idiotic cohorts in Ottawa municipal government and policing – simply rolled over and allowed the convoy to set up shop.

    The other protests were solved without the use of the Emergency Act and the existing laws were all that were required to solve the Ottawa situation.

    The declaration of the Emergency Act was a travesty of government. It was not required.

    The theft of monies from well meaning Canadians is simply that: theft.

    I was in Montreal in 1970 during the War Measures Act crisis. I was only visiting but I can say that I do recall being very uneasy (an understatement) at all the soldiers on the street, etc. and I was glad to leave.

    Really, the Emergency Act is not really any better than the WMA. In theory it is supposed to be more limited in scope but that is theory. The idiot who is the leader of the Liberal Party – sorry, I am so upset that I don’t want to use his name and he definitely is NOT my leader – simply made things much worse by his name calling of many working class and middle class and very earnest Canadians who were trying to make a point that he and his party had ignored. In fact, they ignored the point when it was made by ever so many people that it was considered that the only way to convey the large feeling on this issue across the country was through the medium of this convoy.

    I deliberately did not vote in the last federal election, knowing that the “winner” would say that “the people have spoken” and use that as a reason to do what he wished. I wanted no part of any of that sort of justification so I simply stayed away from the polls.

    This abomination of a decision simply proves to me, yet again, that Canada is slanted toward the interests of Central Canada and that the Prairies have no hope of ever having any consideration of our issues. Ever.

  3. Some comments in your post that seem quite out of character to me as follows;
    A) Implying that a long term blockade of the core of a city is comparable to the night time burning of some churches associated with historical Indigenous mistreatments is totally unreasonable. Blockades of the pipelines did not go on as long as the damages to hundreds of Ottawa businesses ande individuals. Police forces in the provinces did not request support and assistance in the handling of tthe blockades as in this instance. Could you suggest alternate means that Ottawa could have used to stop the anarchy leaning group from continuing to perpetuate their damages? Agreed that the mismanagement by Trudeau has been condescending and dismissive but the conservatives have been even worse contributors to the lawlessness.
    B) Is the protest a cry for freedom as you suggest or a cry for anarchy? The ulimate freedom where everyone ie free to do as you wish is anarchy and I am sure that is not what you are supporting. The leaders of the convoy, your “Patriots”, could be grouped with other well known anarchists and are not truckers objecting to vaccine mandates at US border. The US invoked the border double vax rule on Jan 20 and Ottawa naively made it symmetrical. Perhaps a Washinton blockade would have been useful… Anarchists are Patriots????
    C) The state is coming for your children? That does not seem like a thoughtful comment but an extemism! How do you suggest that the children there to be protected if they are used to stop the police enforment actions? Removing the children if they are placed in the line of fire seems reasonable to me. Did you see the firearms cached at Coutts by the protestors there?
    D) Trudeau wants a “post national state”? What basis do you have for that statement? Granted he has crapped the nest in handling this and is generally incompetent and without regard for western Canada. Good thing Rachael expedited his purchase of TransMountain or that 20B project would likely be dead! that may be one of his few good steps.

    In summary your post does not seem to be Beyond Polarity but somewhat ensconced in same.

    1. We appreciate your honest response.
      First- here is one link to the reference to Trudeau’s comment re Canada being a post nation state: https://amp.theguardian.com/world/2017/jan/04/the-canada-experiment-is-this-the-worlds-first-postnational-country

      On the bank accounts being frozen, and the ability to do what’s deemed necessary, that’s being questioned by civil liberties lawyers. It’s making some people nervous, including bankers.

      As for your other comments, it’s not at all meant to suggest the protestors have this right. Not at all. Our mistake if it’s not clear enough. For that we am sorry.

      Some of these people in this “freedom movement” have been co-opted by bad actors. And we don’t support their POV. But they are now being goaded- of course, no children will be ‘taken away’ unless they are seriously in harms way, but saying that out loud triggers every deeply rooted suspicion, if you are someone who is deeply suspicious or afraid of the system. Same with the bank accounts.

      None of this happened overnight. It’s unfair to blame any single political party; many people believe this all started decades ago. And it’s incredibly frustrating and deeply worrying for 99% of Canadians. But it is the worsening polarization that is alarming- the mocking and goading—it’s a cycle of digging deeper into the opposition rather than trying to figure out what can defuse emotions.

      Again, thank you for your feedback. It’s not useful to point out the problems without pointing to solutions as well. We tried–with O’Toole (he was already a dead politician walking, so why didn’t he use his military smarts and intervene?). We tried with the Liberals (as have some inside the party itself). We’ve not endorsed the Conservative approach, or the NDP. This is a beyond partisan issue and rather than just saying the words, political leaders need to walk the walk. We all do.

      1. Thanks Donna for the link. Seems like “post national” is a pretty good state to be in and Trudeaus comment was an acknowledgement not and object as your post implied.
        You know how strongly I disagree with our governments climate adaption failures but I fail to see any meaningful link between an activist cabinet member and invoking the EMA. Seems like a red herring in your generally excellent posts.
        You are precisely on point in emphasizing the polarizing behavior of Trudeau et al, disgusting really.
        Regarding the banking powers there is of course potential for abuse but do you have a suggested alternate method to limit financial support of unlawful acts and factors? Similarly any cost recovery mechanisms in mind?
        One last nit to pick is regarding children. In that regard I think the Ottawa police actions and warnings in that regard were right on target and if such comments inflame the folks that choose to use their children as shields, so be it.
        You know how much I admire and respect the great bulk of your efforts Donna so please keep up the great work.

  4. “Using children as human shields is deplorable BUT”
    There are no “buts”. This & the assault weapons seized at Coutts prove who these insurrectionists are.
    Trudeau is 100% correct.

  5. Politicians, ideas, platforms and the ballot box to direct public policy. Free and fair elections.

    Holding governments to account for their promises and for their actions. Peaceful, legal protest of laws one believes are unjust without threatening the safety or livelihoods of others or impeding the free flow of goods and services.

    Keeping children safe, calling out symbols of hate, respecting national monuments of service in the cause of freedom.

    Showing empathy. Listening. Dialogue. Building bridges instead of throwing stones. Respect for the rule of law.

    Court challenges as checks on potentially overstepping governments.

    Law enforcement.

    These are the building blocks of a strong, free and democratic Canada. This is the context within which the convoy protests should be discussed.

  6. I think the discovery of weapons at Coutts was a game changer, especially given how the group was truly equipped to do battle.

    It would have been grossly irresponsible for the authorities not to prepare for the Ottawa occupiers to be similarly armed. Unlike relatively isolated Coutts, there was a tremendous potential for collateral damage in densely populated downtown Ottawa.

    Given that, the traditional policing tools which Emergency Act critics argue would have sufficed, would not have been a smart choice. After police were unsuccessful trying to talk to the protestors, their next action would have been some kind of confrontation, with the very real possibility of turning the streets of Ottawa into a battleground.

    As a result, freezing bank accounts (note that this did not mean confiscating their funds, just denying access to them) was a wonderful way of applying real pressure to the occupiers that did not give them a target to shoot at.

    If the Emergency Act was necessary to make it possible to freeze the accounts it was the right choice.

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