Facebook meme.

Normally when I write these opinion pieces, I tend to focus on the energy industry issues and maintain a positive outlook on what we do and why we do it. Obviously, the current main topic of everyone’s conversations of late is the Freedom Convoy 2022 currently underway. This protest has really taken hold not just in Ottawa, but across Canada, the USA and many other countries across the world. But let’s stick close to home. I’ve had a lot of thoughts on this, and it’s hard not to compare these protests to others that have occurred in the recent past.

The Idle No More Movement: In November of 2012 the movement started by three Indigenous women in protest to Bill C-45 by the Conservative Harper Government. I won’t go into details but they were concerned about the individual rights of First Nations (and Canadians) being trampled. It meant that the lands and resources could potentially be leased out for development. This could be done in a single vote without the majority present. The main concern of the protesters was “government overreach,” which can be a troubling thing at any time in history. Many people attached themselves to this protest that did it strictly for their own amusement or maybe just to feel relevant in society. Sadly, there was often a mess left to clean up after the protesters moved on.

Pipeline Protests: In 2020 a group of First Nations people (and others) began to block rail lines and access to pipeline projects. These people felt that they had the right to halt production of oil in Canada and the movement of goods and services by rail. As far as agreement of their opinion and tactics, they were in a small minority of local First Nations. This minority was extremely well-funded by wealthy groups and celebrities from our neighbors to the south. To what end or for what reason, who can say? Again, these protesters were in the minority. Most First Nation’s leaders welcomed the opportunity to provide financial and employment security for the people of their nations. This is a cause I believe in. Our First Nations being able to not only survive, but thrive. There are many examples in Canada where this has happened under good leadership. But, trains were stopped, garbage left strewn at the sites and wooden pallets set on fire. Again, a mess left for others to clean up.

The Freedom Convoy 2022: Well, here we are, a protest which started out as a protest against mandated vaccinations for truck drivers crossing borders, but has become about so much more. Personal freedoms, unfair carbon taxation and much more. But again it is about government overreach. Of course, as with ANY protest, there will be (to borrow a word from Brad Wall) JACKWAGONS. The current federal government has paid good money (our money) for the media to shine a bright light on the lowest common denominator present at the current protest. Then Prime Minister Trudeau proceeded with the name calling and insults. Misogynist. Racist. White supremacists. But why? The media, nor Stephen Harper did not do this during Idle No More, nor did Trudeau during the pipeline protests. And very little (see nothing) was done to stop those protests. Why would the leader of Canada hurl insults (while hiding from them) at a very diverse group of men and women who are responsible for shipping of goods across our country and to our biggest trading partner?

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Time for my opinion, which along with $2.96 will get you a medium coffee and a muffin at McDonalds. Prime Minister Trudeau had ample warning that this convoy was coming. A week or more of advertising by the Freedom Convoy gave all the Ottawa jackwagons (Thanks again Brad) advanced warning that they were coming. Worst planned “insurrection” in history. I honestly believe that the Liberal government truly believed (hoped) that this convoy was truly a bunch of terrible people with malice in their hearts was coming to cause serious trouble. Why else would Trudeau start with the insults before they crossed the Manitoba border? He, along with his bought and paid for media (CBC, CTV & Global) made sure the narrative was established on who these terrible people were and why they must be dismissed. He was hoping he would come out of this by “defending” Ottawa from these “barbarians” at the gate, and in so doing come out looking like the media assisted hero he believes he is. This fleet of racist, misogynist, etc. people was going to be the violent seditionists that Trudeau was going to bolster his legacy going forward. I guess what I am saying is that the government allowed this to happen and make some political hay with it.

Here is where he ran into trouble. The “violent” mob came, parked their trucks and started singing the national anthem. They set up bouncy castles (shocking) played street hockey (scandalous) and the worst of all, cleaned up the streets to a point they had never been so clean before (treason!). There were men and women of many ethnicities (so much for racism and misogyny), singing and dancing together. A rational leader would have seen this and made the decision to meet with the truckers and have a discussion. But Justin decided to double-down (despite some Liberal Party members advising otherwise) and continue to paint them with a broad brush of terrorists. (Also coercing Go-Fund-Me to cancel them) Special shout-out to Mark Carney, former governor of the Bank of Canada, for the use of the word “seditionist;” very strong and unnecessary language. You’re better than that. At least I thought you were.

So what is so different from this protest as opposed to other ones? You know, the protests that the Liberal Party supported in the past, despite the disruption to business, the economy and everyday life of Canadians. My opinion? The people protesting this time are not his usual voting base. These people are the middle class. The blue-collar-tax-paying-hard-working people of Canada. They do not rely on government assistance to survive. These are not the elite. Most are not college educated or come from wealthy families. They do not have famous actors or elite rich families (Rockefellers) sending them money and no George Soros organizing it for them. They do not support “defund the police” (which Trudeau took a knee for) these are the people that at the beginning of this pandemic were the “essential workers,” making sure we all were able to feed ourselves and our families. Many were told they couldn’t use public washrooms or showers, but they drove anyway.

As of February 14 (Happy Valentines??) this Freedom Convoy went from being a “fringe group, with unacceptable views” to a serious threat to the economy of Canada and which the Emergencies Act has been brought to bear. Is this necessary? Does it require the full force of the government power to solve this, when a simple meeting would have defused the situation? Or is this something that the federal government was hoping for, and are using this event to stifle their political foes? There have been no murders, kidnappings, violence or acts of destruction. There have been roses handed out to Ottawa police as they sit in their squad cars. Seems like overkill by my estimation.

Now, in the eyes of the federal government and many people in the country, they are the enemy. What’s changed? Nothing. Not a thing. They are not bending to the will of a weak, cowardly leader. These hard-working truck drivers are not a risk to the country. They have not and will not spread COVID.

The funny thing is most of these people have been vaccinated. So, is this really about vaccinations? I do not believe it is. On one side it’s about money, control and government overreach. On the other, it’s about honesty, truth and freedom. Canada is supposed to be a free country. Let’s do our best not to disappoint each other and our ancestors who sacrificed everything for us.

 

Brian Crossman works at Independent Well Servicing in Estevan. For the record, he is vaccinated, takes his vitamins eats right (most of the time) and does everything possible to protect himself and his family. Special thanks to ALL the truckers out there working hard year-round to keep us alive and well.

 

  • 0023 LC Trucking tractor picker hiring mix
  • 0022 Grimes winter hiring
  • 0021 OSY Rentals S8 Promo
  • 0020 Sk Oil Show PO Ad 02 speakers with voiceover
  • 0019 Jerry Mainil Ltd hiring dugout
  • 0018 IWS Hiring Royal Summer
  • 0017 eventworx
  • 0016 Estevan Meter Services
  • 0014 Buffalo Potash What if PO
  • 0015 Latus Viro PO Ad 01
  • 0013 Panther Drilling PO ad 03 top drive rigs
  • 0011
  • 0009
  • 0006 JK Junior
  • 0004 Royal Helium PO Ad 02
  • 9001
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