Freedom Convoy Protestors Return
On July 1, 2022, freedom convoy (convite) protestors returned once more to Canada’s capital city.
Confident in their ability to once more make an impact on the city of Ottawa, Convites swarmed into the capital city, waving Canadian flags and holding signs emblazoned with “freedom” for their parade.
“Freedom” from what exactly seemed to be unclear, as many seemed confused as to the purpose of the parade. As of July 2022, nearly all COVID-19 mandates have been dropped. Even masks are optional, with the province suggesting that those experiencing COVID symptoms wear them in enclosed spaces.
One nugget of drama in the days’ festivities came when protestors set up a table in front of Parliament Hill selling t-shirts and passing out paper brochures of the constitution. Police approached the site, having a standoff with the owners as they spoke over the police in order to halt them. The police eventually stepped away as other protestors swarmed in, having difficulty finding a way to diffuse the situation in a quiet and calm manner.
Marching down main streets in Ottawa, one heckler took care to call out the Prime Minister, blaming him for “silencing” the movement and making Canada a dictatorship.
Interesting, considering the heckler’s ability to call out the Prime Minister during an unrestricted parade through the nation’s capital.
After the parade, protestors returned to Wellington Street by Parliament Hill for designated speakers. After a brief period of confusion where organizers had to work with Ottawa Police to find an appropriate location to set up. Among them was James Topp, a soldier in the Canadian Armed Forces who has been marching across the country to “protest federal government mandates” and be a voice for federal workers who have not been able to speak up about the government’s corruption.
Supporters of Topp have swarmed to his website to support his cause, donating money and purchasing t-shirts to proudly amplify Topp’s message among their peers.
Even more shocking among the protestors on Canada Day was Pierre Poilievre, prospective leader of Canada’s Conservative Party. Attempting to gain support from convoy protestors, Poilievre clearly has his sights set on the September 10th Conservative Party leadership election – the election which statistics predict he is in favour to win.
While Ottawa residents continue to reel from February’s convoy protest, it appears as if they are not out of the clear yet – the protests on Canada Day indicate the convoy’s attempts to stay culturally relevant. The question remains – will anyone care to listen to their claims?