A person waves a Canadian flag in front of banners in support of truckers in Ottawa on Feb. 14, 2022. (CNS photo/Lars Hagberg, Reuters)

Have no truck with loss of freedom

  • February 9, 2023

Jesus said: “There is nothing covered up that will not be uncovered, nothing secret that will not become known” (Luke 12:2-3). 

Although Jesus was ostensibly speaking of the Final Judgment, oftentimes we still do get a glimpse of God’s justice on Earth. I believe we are living through one of those moments as censored science, muzzled media and cancelled caregivers are speaking out and popping up everywhere like whack-a-moles.

February 2023 marks the first anniversary of the Freedom Convoy to Ottawa. Regardless of whether or not you were a supporter of the Convoy, it must be conceded that the truckers accomplished something far beyond their original goal of ending the vaccine mandates. 

I don’t mean that they achieved the peaceful (albeit noisy) demonstration turning into a full-blown anti-tyranny rally (regarding draconian, damaging and prolonged steps to deal with the pandemic, along with the suspension of basics rights and freedoms). I mean that they forced the hand of power to make it reveal itself. They didn’t know what was going to happen, they only knew they weren’t going to back down, no matter what. No one knew how far power was not only willing to go, but how far it could go.

The world watched in rapt and livid horror as bank accounts and assets were gleefully frozen — not just of the truckers, but anyone who donated to them. Even supposedly anonymous cryptocurrency was successfully targeted. Convoy organizers and drivers were roughed up and arrested, licenses were revoked, livelihoods were terminated and parents were threatened with losing custody of their children. 

The truckers pulled back the veil. And everyone on the planet knew at that moment, that if it can happen in Canada, it can happen anywhere.

Why say “power” without naming names? Because “the powers that be” are not simply one leader, politician, party, nation or even one era. 

The Freedom Convoy was not truly about politics, regardless of the ubiquitous F-bomb banners directed at one person. It was only personal in that governmental policies were reaching deep into people’s private, professional, academic, family, physical and mental health lives, taking away choice and autonomy, stunting freedom, growth and movement of young and old, far beyond what is reasonable. It needed to stop. It’s no coincidence that Indigenous Canadians figured prominently in the Convoy as prime organizers.

To fiercely advocate for freedom is godly, because God created us free and to be free. Unscientific “safety” does not trump God-given freedoms (or the Charter of Rights and Freedoms). Grandma gets to choose whether she wants to die in frightful isolation or surrounded by her “vector” grandkids, not the government.

Friends who are Ottawa residents were milling about, talking to police, protestors, bystanders, counter-protestors, etc., and sending me e-mails and photos. I got a call from a Toronto-based trucker asking for prayers. I watched countless hours of on-the-ground, in-the-trenches footage. Precious few news outlets bothered to be there. 

When the CBC showed up, people either confronted them for their biased coverage, or refused to speak to them. I’m not solely picking on the CBC. Officialdom news the world over is sounding more like Pravda/TASS all the time. Valuable real-life, meta, fourth wall “news literacy” was being done by citizen journalists filming the CBC filming only small groups of religious-types or the now-infamous Nazi plant. 

These citizen journalists exposed propaganda techniques as they filmed swaths of diverse folks surrounding the CBC that were edited out by the laser focus of a prejudicial lens. (I report this with sadness because I was a long-time CBC radio listener. Because of its unabashed promotion of ideology, lack of integrity and true diversity, I ceased about eight years ago. Thank God for alternative, independent media!)

When the Convoy first rolled eastward out of B.C., an American piped up on Twitter: “I get this. My father was a trucker. They’re built different.” I firmly believe Canadian truckers will go down in history as heroes. I hope those truckers — who laid it all on the line, ultimately for all of us, in the dead of a Canadian winter — have no regrets.

When you think nothing can be done, that resistance is futile and the only way out is more and more compliance: Hold the line!

(Sr. Helena Raphael Burns, fsp, is a Daughter of St. Paul. She holds a Masters in Media Literacy Education and studied screenwriting at UCLA. HellBurns.com Twitter: @srhelenaburns)

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