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It appears Justin Trudeau is now running from the group he labeled “a small fringe minority,” as thousands of citizens converge at Canada’s capital to protest his authoritarian and wildly unpopular vaccine mandates.
According to a report from Canada’s CBC, “Amid security concerns, Trudeau and his family have been moved from their home to an undisclosed location in the nation’s capital.”
“A demonstration that was originally planned to urge the federal government to drop its vaccine mandate for cross-border essential workers like truckers has morphed into a larger movement against all public health measures,” the CBC writes.
Indeed, the protesters have called Trudeau’s COVID measures tantamount to medical apartheid, and the now world-famous Freedom Convoy has refused to leave Ottawa until the mandates are lifted.
According to NDTV, while the protest has so far been peaceful, police are out in force to ensure it stays that way.
“The zone around Parliament was closed for the weekend, and Ottawa police chief Peter Sloly described the situation on the ground as ‘unique, fluid, risky and significant,'” NTDV reported.
Risky enough that the prime minister, who is in isolation after being exposed to COVID, has moved his family out of their home at Rideau Hall.
The precaution may not be entirely unwarranted.
“In 2020, a Canadian Armed Forces member carrying a gun rammed his vehicle into the gates of Rideau Hall, where the Trudeaus live, hoping to reach the prime minister,” reports the Independent.
And Trudeau isn’t the only one to pack out in the midst of protests. When Tea Party activists descended on Washington D.C. in 2009 by the thousands to protest former President Obama’s health care reforms, Obama boarded the Marine One helicopter for Minneapolis, flying over the growing crowds below.
The atmosphere in Canada’s capital remains passionate but peaceful, as the crowds continue to grow.
“As protests began on Saturday,” reports the Independent, “the Parliamentary Protective Service estimated up to 10,000 people may attend the events this weekend, and the Ottawa Police Service has received reinforcements from the Toronto, London, York, and Durham regions, plus the Ontario Provincial Police.”
On Twitter, the event has caught the attention of everyone from Russel Brand to Elon Musk, as videos of the bundled protestors are circulated.
One citizen’s sign seems to capture the mood of the crowds with a “honk honk” joke for the absent Trudeau:
This rules. pic.twitter.com/0FN64NIGIA
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) January 29, 2022
Many are stressing the importance of citizen journalists to ensure the scope of the historic event isn’t downplayed by the media.
the revolution will not be televised
Ottawa, Canada 🇨🇦 RISES against Covid MANDATES
(sound on)#RESIST pic.twitter.com/RJ8NYGCdkQ
— Maajid أبو عمّار (@MaajidNawaz) January 29, 2022
Journalist Andrew Lawton stresses that, in spite of all the cautionary rhetoric from nervous officials, the protest wasn’t quite what the media had been billing.
“One big party here. Where’s the racism and violence we were promised?” he wrote.
My best attempt at a panoramic to show how big the convoy crowd is. One big party here. Where’s the racism and violence we were promised? pic.twitter.com/XFAohPIGvz
— Andrew Lawton (@AndrewLawton) January 29, 2022
And chills swept the Twitterverse, when a video of massive crowd spontaneously singing “O Canada,” made the rounds.
The crowd at Parliament Hill in Ottawa breaks into an impromptu round of O Canada.
Footage by @PuffinsPictures pic.twitter.com/rlniykKc4E
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) January 29, 2022
The Freedom Convoy has been felt worldwide and met with an avalanche of support, and that’s exactly what the truckers were hoping to accomplish.
“It’s actually for every single person… everybody on the road,” Ontario trucker Stephen Penderness told NDTV. “It’s all about your free choice.”
10-4, good buddy.
And thank you.
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