The 4/20 Vancouver‘s Farmer’s Market is without a doubt one of the largest cannabis protests in the world. What went from a small group of protestors at the Vancouver Art Gallery has morphed into a massive demonstration down at Sunset Beach. What was once a protest for the right to consume is now a protest for the right to buy, sell, and consume without government interference.
Canadians may have a reputation for being docile and obedient, but give us the right issue and we channel all the rage and spite of the Canadian goose into ensuring a Just society.
That is the sentiment behind the Freedom Convoy.
It began as a protest against the January 15th mandate requiring COVID vaccinations for cross-border truckers. But it has become an all-purpose protest against COVID restrictions and government overreach into civil society. Tamara Lich, a Maverick Party official who started the GoFundMe page has this to say: “This is not just about a trucker vaccine mandate, this is not about COVID, this is not about whether you’re vaccinated or unvaccinated, this is about mandating freedom.”
For months these truckers were “essential workers” we regarded as heroes. They were on the “front lines” of the pandemic along with the doctors and nurses. But as we’ve learned over the last year, your status as “essential” can be revoked just as easily as it was assigned.
A lot of these truckers have been crossing the border nonstop since 2020. Like many health care workers, a lot of these truckers have already had COVID and thus have the antibodies. Some of them may have even brought COVID into Canada. After all, a virus is a force of nature (even when man-made). Lockdowns, vaccine mandates, passports and other travel restrictions didn’t stop new variants from entering Canada. What is the rationale behind this policy besides security theatre and ensuring continued record profits for Pfizer?
It’s not like the convoy is a small group of rednecks from Alberta.
This protest started in British Columbia. Like the “On-to-Ottawa Trek” from the Great Depression, these men and women are making a beeline to Ottawa. The corporate-state media is fear-mongering about “far-right extremists” turning this protest into Canada’s “January 6th.” Regardless, the mass amount of truckers and their supporters cannot be wished away. In the age of social media, anyone with a smartphone can see for themselves – this convoy is huge. They have signs that say, “We Are Not Anti-Vaxx. We Are Anti-Mandate.”
It is clear the COVID narrative is collapsing. Roman Baber, an Ontario politician kicked out of Doug Ford’s government for his opposition to COVID lockdowns, tweeted, “Politicians can tell where the wind is blowing. In the last 48 hours we had more politicians come out against lockdowns & passports than in the last 2 years.”
Of course, politicians will always jump on bandwagon if it proves favourable for their reelection. Cannabis protestors know this through and through. Governments justified the drug war on cannabis using bogus experts. Now they profit from it. They argue that production, processing, and consumption can only be regulated by government bureaucracy.
That is why our 4/20 protests have morphed into protesting government overreach in the legal recreational market. You don’t have to be a cannabis expert to witness the blatant hypocrisy of government officials (and former cops) profiting from legalization.
And that is why the Freedom Convoy is important. It’s more than allowing truckers to cross the U.S.-Canada border unvaccinated. It’s about the loss of our civil liberties in the name of public health. Again, a situation Canada’s cannabis connoisseurs are all too familiar with. #FreedomConvoy2022