Friday, March 25, 2022

Reflecting on Canada’s Freedom Convoy: “The Frozen Ashes” of Our Democracy and the “Frozen Assets” of Those Who Defended It


Canada Ottawa freedom convoy truckers democracy banks frozen assets coronavirus restrictions mandates vaccines

Derek Brouwer owns a small fleet of trucks for his business, transporting hay from Southern Ontario, down into the United States. He was interviewed on Fox news recently for the blow back that he received for having a truck in Ottawa during the Emergency Measures Act.

I spoke to Derek over the phone to get the rest of his story.

When a neighbour asked him if he wanted to be in the convoy, Derek’s drivers got busy attaching flags to the trucks. One of his trucks was in Florida at the time. The other two drove with the convoy, starting at Drumbo, Ontario. One went to Toronto, and the other to Ottawa. In Ottawa the truck and driver were ushered, by police, to a front row parking space by the parliament buildings.

Derek said he was quite optimistic at the start, he was just waiting for the Prime Minister to come out and talk to them. Especially since Trudeau had told Prime Minister Modi, little more than a year ago to open up dialogue with the Indian farmers, who had protested for 12 months, it seemed like a reasonable request.

“At first it was like hanging out at a truck show,” he said. “Lots of people came by to say ‘hi’, and offer me or my drivers a thank you for being there. I let the young guys go on the weekends,” Derek explained. “I took my turn when it was more quiet during the week. Yeah, they took the garbage cans away, and locked the shops up, and anywhere you could go to the bathroom. We were there that first weekend of Jan 29th, and for about 23 days, I think. When the police got pushy and violence started happening on Saturday, Feb 19th, I heard that drivers were being pulled out of the trucks and beaten up pretty bad, so I told my driver to leave the truck there, unlocked, and just get himself out. With all the people and panic, the last thing I wanted was to try moving the truck and have the wheels unknowingly roll over someone in the street.”

The police were nice all the way through the protest, right up until the end, Brouwer relates. He didn’t have much contact with police himself, but did at one point have an affable conversation with an officer about the eternal (centennial) flame, and why it had been extinguished.

The only notice they got that the trucks would be have to be moved were unsigned papers left in a bunch of truck windows…for all you could tell it could have been a prank, because no jurisdiction or official authority was listed on the notice. In fact, it was a little strange, because the concrete barricades had been blocking everything for some time, and the police had just opened them and waved more trucks into Wellington Street, the ones that had been parked on side streets and such, on Feb 15th which was pretty strange. Brouwer was keeping an eye on the situation with the Emergency Act, and decided to move some money to his Florida bank account, through a signed cheque, that Tuesday.  (more...)

Reflecting on Canada’s Freedom Convoy: “The Frozen Ashes” of Our Democracy and the “Frozen Assets” of Those Who Defended It

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