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Dear editor,

To quote one of the truckers I saw interviewed on CBC yesterday, “Enough is enough.” The “Freedom Convoy,” you have had your convoy, demonstration and protest. You did so without a permit. Somehow you were able to raise awareness of your convoy a week or more in advance and across the country, raise money on a Go Fund Me page, yet none of your organizers thought to apply and obtain the necessary permit from the City of Ottawa.

In typical, polite Canadian fashion, this was tolerated for a prolonged period. Freedom Convoy, you have been asked politely to leave the City of Ottawa by its Mayor. And still the rebuttal is to say you will stay until you get what you want — all the covid19 mandates lifted. Please pay attention. You are getting what you ask for. The lockdown restrictions, as of today, are lifting slowly, in the very city and province you are blocking roads and bringing the downtown to a halt. As restaurant workers, shop keepers and other workers were keen to return to work, in pursuit of their “new normal,” they have been denied that opportunity as businesses in downtown Ottawa close due to your Freedom Convoy, now in day four, and safety concerns.

The coverage of the defamation of meaningful and significant landmarks leaves a bitter taste for the shameful lack of respect demonstrated.

No clear message was conveyed by the Convoy spokespeople and truckers interviewed. Stating the facts was helpful, however, did not help your claim. Fact stated: 90% Canadian truckers have been vaccinated. Many in this Convoy are vaccinated. Yet, you collectively dredge through brutal cold to prove vaccination is working for you. Those interviewed were alive, healthy and Covid-19 free and working!

You’ve already collectively complied with the mandates. It seems childish, pointless and hypocritical to complain about it after the fact. And for those of your group who are not yet vaccinated, how selfish. That action puts others at risk and only serves to prolong this global pandemic you’ve had enough of.

Your best opportunity to have your say was at the polls a few months ago. Did you vote? And today, despite the signs and memes all over your protest condemning and mocking Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Conservative leader Erin O’Toole’s own caucus is taking steps to place his head on a platter.

Please, before pledging to disrupt the lives of the regular citizens of Ottawa, pay attention to reality. The Liberals and NDP will not cave to your demands and the Conservatives may be within days of not having a leader at all. Many of your demands concern mandates implemented by provincial governments, which cannot be addressed in Ottawa.

Please, I ask you, to grab a Beaver Tail before you mosey on down the road. A tasty souvenir to mark your trip. And may I suggest you redefine “freedom.”

“May we think of freedom not as the right to do as we please, but as the opportunity to do what is right.” ~Peter Marshall~

Holly Angus