By Mark Anderson
Patrick King is an Alberta, Canada-based activist who is known for having challenged the Canadian government’s “scientific” claims last year in court regarding its highly restrictive Covid-19 policies. On Jan. 30, King sat down with this AFP writer to discuss the massive truckers’ convoy and the protest he played a role in organizing.
King noted that the goal of the convoy and protest taking place in the Canadian capital is largely to make it clear to the Trudeau government that a large cross section of truckers and the general population are not prepared to surrender their liberties, their livelihoods and their medical freedom in the face of Canada’s especially stringent vaccine mandates and other tyrannical Covid-19 policies. Many Canadians fear these measures could soon rival those of another Crown country—overtly tyrannical Australia.
King asserted that the convoy is not some passing fancy:
This is going to last however long it takes to make this happen. Here in Canada, we can no longer live the way they’re trying to keep us. . . . They’re going to have to stop and start listening to us. If we continue onward in this overreach-dictatorship, we’re not even going to recognize this country. We’re not even going to know what Canada used to be.
King says that this is much more than an anti-vaccine protest:
What we have here are truckers who are vaccinated and truckers who are not vaccinated. We have Canadian citizens who are vaccinated and we have Americans here who are not vaccinated. We have concerned people from all over who are vaccinated and not vaccinated. It doesn’t matter. . . . Now Canada is looking at taxing people who aren’t jabbed.
BORDER COMMERCE KEY ISSUE
The particular binational mandate that forms the focal point of the protest forbids unvaccinated Canadian truckers from entering the United States, nor can unvaccinated American truckers enter Canada.
King—who understands this mandate already had caused noticeable food and material shortages well before the convoy formed during the latter part of January—remarked, “I don’t believe any of their numbers,” including the Canadian government’s claim that “90% of Canadian truckers are vaccinated.”
“We’ve got the whole city in gridlock,” King said regarding Ottawa, where the Canadian Parliament meets. Asked about Canadian government responses up to Jan. 31, he said: “Their response is their usual hateful stuff that we’re ‘racist’ and ‘xenophobic’.”
He went on to say Jan. 31:
We’ve got a minimum of 50,000 trucks here right now from the United States and Canada, and more truckers are coming from Alberta. There is a minimum of 400 trucks parked outside Ottawa waiting to get in, and hundreds more on side streets.
Conversely, mainstream outlet France 24 reported that “hundreds” of trucks and “thousands” of people blocked the streets of central Ottawa on Jan. 29, when the protesters first began entering the capital, as part of a “self-titled freedom convoy to protest vaccine mandates required to cross the U.S. border.” On Jan. 31, King said the total number of individuals involved in protesting was in the hundreds of thousands, possibly clearing 1 million:
Closer to Parliament, families calmly marched on a bitterly cold day, while young people chanted and older people in the crowd banged pots and pans in protest under [Prime Minister Justin] Trudeau’s office windows. Canadian media said the prime minister and his family had been escorted out of their home and taken to a secret location in the capital.
Philippe Castonguay, a 31-year-old businessman, told France 24: “The vaccination requirements are taking us toward a new society we never voted for.”
Scores of truckers and other citizens organized the convoy, which trekked all the way from Vancouver, British Columbia to Ottawa. It was in mid-January that Canada and the United States imposed the vaccine requirement for truckers entering each other’s country, affecting 5,500 miles of border—the world’s longest.
Dan Dicks of the investigative Canadian alt-media outlet “Press for Truth” remarked online:
The largest convoy in human history is currently underway . . . to demand an end to the vaccine mandates! Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently said [as reported via the government-funded Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC)] this group represents a “small fringe” who hold “unacceptable views.”
Meanwhile he just announced that he’ll now conveniently be isolating himself [for several days at the time of the protest] after “coming into contact with Covid-19,” even though he is triple-vaxxed and “feels fine.”
Asked about the Canadian government’s ongoing concerns that the protests could become violent, King’s on-the-ground assessment was:
Nobody here is doing anything harmful. We’re all peaceful. We’ve had a few “agents provocateurs,” trying to make trouble by flying flags that people think of as racist. We told them to take the flags down and get out of here. One flag design showed . . . a swastika. But everything’s fine. The weather’s been clear and pretty cold—but that’s Canada. It’s like a giant tailgate party out here.
Meanwhile, another dimension to this issue likely will give the Canadian “revolt” considerable staying power. Former Newfoundland Premier Brian Peckford, who cannot easily be written off as a “fringe” character, has been making waves across Canada by appearing in popular Canadian psychologist Jordan Peterson’s videos, among other outlets, to announce his federal lawsuit. The suit is seeking to:
. . . strike down the federal government’s mandatory Covid-19 vaccine requirements for air [plus train and ship] travelers. The court action is on behalf of several Canadians whose Charter rights and freedoms have been infringed.
The “Charter” refers to the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, Canada’s version of America’s Bill of Rights.
Peckford’s lawsuit was filed by the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms, based in Calgary, Alberta. The JCCF noted:
On October 30, 2021, the federal government announced that anyone travelling by air, train, or ship, must be fully vaccinated. The travel vaccination mandate has prevented approximately 6 million unvaccinated Canadians (15% of Canada’s population) from travel within Canada and prevents them from flying out of Canada. Some of the Canadians involved in the lawsuit cannot travel to help sick loved ones, visit family and friends, take international vacations, and live ordinary lives.
The main applicant in the case, former Newfoundland Premier A. Brian Peckford . . . is the only surviving drafter and signatory 40 years after the 1982 Constitution and the Charter was enacted.
Another protest started Jan. 29 in Edmonton, Alberta in support of the larger Ottawa event, local news outlets noted. At press time, King understood that convoys are forming in the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia, among other places.