Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has denounced participants in Canada’s Freedom Convoy as a racist “fringe minority” of people who have “unacceptable views.”
And as the movement inspires truckers abroad and shuts down traffic at the U.S. border, American media is sounding the alarm, describing the protests against COVID-19 vaccine mandates as “sedition,” “insurrection” and “a threat to democracy.”
In an MSNBC interview, the protest was characterized as “part of the globalization of Trumpism.”
In a report from Ottawa for MSNBC, a reporters said “there has not been as much violence as some had perhaps project, but that does not necessarily mean it has been peaceful.” And residents, CNN reported, said they feel “terrorized” and “like hostages.”
See a montage of U.S. coverage of the Freedom Convoy:
Amazing compilation of media elites denouncing Canada’s Freedom Convoy. “Sedition. Insurrection. A threat to democracy.” “This city is under siege.” “Insurrection by airhorn.” “There haven’t been any violent outbursts however horns have been honking.”pic.twitter.com/0T3LhpbK5P
— Michael P Senger (@MichaelPSenger) February 9, 2022
A substantial portion of Canadians apparently are not buying the spin from their own media. Thousands turned out along the route from British Columbia to Ottawa to cheer on and support the truckers with food, fuel and other supplies. And when Ottawa enacted a “fuel ban” and confiscated gas cans, local citizens filled the gap.
See gas cans on the street in Ottawa:
After the “fuel ban” it is now illegal to bring gas cans to the Freedom Convoy Peaceful Protest — here is what the streets of Ottawa looked like tonight.
God bless these people 🙏🏻😂 pic.twitter.com/kswVn4vtVS
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) February 9, 2022
People hit the streets with gas cans:
They tried to smear them.
They tried to steal their fuel.
— James Melville 🗽 (@JamesMelville) February 9, 2022
“We are the world”:
CHILLS: Canadian Freedom Convoy Supporters Holding Hands, Singing, Tyrants Are SHOOK pic.twitter.com/kIRsTGGYeL
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) February 4, 2022
On Tuesday morning, the protest temporarily shut down traffic in both directions at the bridge connecting Windsor, Ontario with Detroit, Michigan, where 75% of Canadian exports to the U.S. pass. Canada’s border agency said a major border crossing in Coutts, Alberta, also was temporarily shut down.
See the blockade at the Ambassador Bridge:
CANADA, it is happening the Windsor Detroit Ambassador Bridge is blocked. Traffic is NOT moving. @JustinTrudeau what do you think of the Fringe Minority now? This is live footage. pic.twitter.com/MPydXVlL3c
— TR6Guy, F🍁CK TRUDEAU HONK HONK (@tr6_guy) February 7, 2022
Meanwhile, the protests have spread abroad, reported the Daily Telegraph of London. In Anchorage, 100 Alaskan truckers rallied in support of the Canadians, as did their counterparts in the Australian capital Canberra and the Netherlands. A convoy blocked streets outside New Zealand’s parliament in Wellington ahead of the first speech of the year by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.
Echoing Trudeau, Ardern said “it would be wrong to, in any way, characterize what we’ve seen outside as a representation of the majority.”
“The majority of New Zealanders have done everything they can to keep one another safe,” she said.
Truckers in the United States are planning a March 1 protest date, according to a “Freedom Convoy to DC 2022” GoFundMe page,” reported The Foreign Desk. The plan is to travel from California to Washington D.C. in protest of vaccine rules nationwide.
Yeah, such a “fringe” minority. Justin Trudeau: Lift the mandates. Then resign. https://t.co/L21nqTgVL7
— Mythinformed MKE (@MythinformedMKE) February 6, 2022
The protest spreads to Bordeaux, France:
WATCH: A French freedom convoy on the move in Bordeaux.
— Election Wizard 🚛 (@ElectionWiz) February 9, 2022
Freedom Convoy in Finland:
And the movement goes viral. Finland’s Freedom Convoy tonight in Helsinki.pic.twitter.com/ydB7VsM7Pr
— Aaron Ginn (@aginnt) February 5, 2022
Truckers and supporters from Finland, Belgium, France, Italy and the Netherlands head to Brussels, Belgium, the headquarters of the European Union:
EUROPE – Truckers and supporters from Helsinki, Belgium, France, Italy & Netherlands, this is an international protest of workers, all heading to Brussels.
— Bernie’s Tweets (@BernieSpofforth) February 7, 2022
The map of the planned Freedom Convoy in France. pic.twitter.com/y8EVMlQkHJ
— Aaron Ginn (@aginnt) February 9, 2022
Germany’s freedom convoy:
Germany’s Freedom Convoy pic.twitter.com/vZEloQGzrL
— Aaron Ginn (@aginnt) February 9, 2022
After testing positive for COVID-19 and leaving Ottawa for an undisclosed location, the triple-vaccinated Trudeau appeared in public for the first time in over a week on Monday during an emergency debate in Parliament.
“Individuals are trying to blockade our economy, our democracy, and our fellow citizens’ daily lives. It has to stop,” he said.
“Canadians trust science. This is a story of a country that got through this pandemic by being united, and a few people shouting and waving swastikas does not define who Canadians are.”
Candace Bergen, the interim leader of the Conservative Party of Canada, which was founded by former Prime Minister Stephen Harper, blamed the crisis largely on Trudeau.
“We are at a crisis point not only with what’s going on out the doors and across the country, but the country overall. And so much of it is because of the things that [Mr. Trudeau] has said and done,” she told fellow lawmakers.
See Bergen’s remarks in Parliament and Trudeau’s response:
NEW: Trudeau Is Heckled on Parliament Floor As He Attempts To Respond To Opposition Calls To End The Mandates 1/2… pic.twitter.com/l14agiHMGT
— Covid-1984 (@Orwells_Ghost_) February 8, 2022
Rex Murphy, a columnist for Canada’s National Post, wrote that the protests have exposed the nations deep divisions of protected class versus the working class, East versus West, and urban versus rural.
He wrote on Tuesday that “as each day passes and the protest deepens and extends to areas beyond its initial phase, the country is witness to a depth of division not seen in decades.”
And meanwhile, the Canadian columnist said, apart from “hurling nasty invective at the protesters, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau could be in Madagascar for all the presence he has shown during the past 10 days.”
Trudeau told reporters Tuesday, “I can understand frustrations with mandates, but mandates are the way to avoid further restrictions.”
Trudeau: “I can understand frustrations with mandates, but mandates are the way to avoid further restrictions” pic.twitter.com/wwsm0U3X3q
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) February 8, 2022
Earlier, he told Canadians the truckers represent a “fringe majority.”
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