I am a mom of two awesome children who teach me more than I ever thought possible. I love writing, exercise, movies, and LGBT advocacy.
Lots Of People, But Is There A Goal?
Peaceful Protest, Not An Opportunity To Destroy
Regarding the "freedom convoy," what, exactly, is the end game here?
I believe, but don't know with any real certainty, the initial mandate of this group was to end the vaccine mandate for truckers, but can't find that in print anywhere. While I believe very firmly that anyone who can get vaxed should get vaxed, I also don't believe a mandate is the answer.
Anyhow, it's very interesting to me that one of the first things we tell anyone who doesn't know about something is, "look it up," so I tried to look it up. https://freedomconvoycanada.com/ may not be the official site, but it's about as close as I got and outside of pictures and links to news reports, there's NOTHING about why people are doing this. Sure, we now have a situation where people are yelling their opinions about this group from either side, but there's nothing "official" that flat out states "this is what we're doing here." The Facebook group says, "Meeting place to discuss logistics, organization and mobilization to restore our Freedoms."
We all have our own theories about what's happening, both right and wrong, and I was angry to read that there were protesters standing on the cenotaph and that the Terry Fox statue had been defaced. We're supposed to teach our kids to discuss things calmly and rationally, not destroy things, to make a point, so what are these protesters hoping for?
If you can't honestly commit to what you want to do on paper or on your own freaking website in words, your message is ultimately lost. If you start destroying things as a way to protest, that's not protesting. That's being a complete idiot, and legal repercussions should justifiably occur.
We talk a lot about freedoms, especially lately, but that's such a blanket statement. We aren't a country that generally discusses unseating our own government, yet this is something I've also heard about the freedom convoy. I have no idea if this is truly one of their goals, but they might want to get a PR rep to help them get their message out properly. Also, can you really say you're fighting for freedom if part of your plan is to get rid of the democratically elected government (if that piece of information is even true)? Regardless of how you feel about the Canadian electoral system, even the suggestion of ousting government officials should set you back on your heels. So should Canadian flags being flown with swastikas on them at your protest.
I understand people are upset about the vaccine mandates that have been established in order to improve outcomes from this pandemic. I know it feels like this pandemic has gone on forever, and as I look at my teenage children, I know there has been nothing fair about the last two years especially for them. I also don't necessarily believe in mandates. Honestly, nothing that I've seen gets accomplished by forcing people to do it. I got vaxed and so did my kids because it was the best thing for all of us, and allowed us some peace of mind knowing that we were as protected from COVID-19 as we could be. In my opinion, you should be vaxed if you're able to be vaxed because it's the logical thing to do.
I respect everyone's right to peacefully protest, and I also respect the right of others to disagree with whatever's being protested regardless of how I might feel about the situation. However, the current situation has generally deteriorated to both sides basically saying, "You're wrong and you suck," rather than an actual conversation. What are we, 9-year-olds?
It is, however, hard to get properly educated about what's happening when there's no clear goal. While it may have initially been about ending vax mandates for truckers, and then vax mandates overall, there's a general sense - particularly since I see the footage coming out of Ottawa showing monuments being defaced - that somehow, whatever goal this group had in mind in the first place has been co-opted. How does destroying things and standing upon places meant to honor our war dead further your point?
It doesn't. It becomes a PR nightmare, and unless things settle down in Canada's national capital, what's unfolding in Ottawa will haunt those involved with the Freedom Convoy for years. While I hope for a positive outcome - that at least these individuals' concerns are heard by prime minister Justin Trudeau - the way things have started in Ottawa should concern every Canadian, because it's not a good look.