Turns out bouncy castles aren’t a national emergency after all
For those whose bank accounts the government froze, those who remain on trial for trumped up charges, and those who were pepper sprayed, tear gassed, or zip tied while protesting for freedom, this week’s news might be too little to late.
Even so, the aforementioned people have all been vindicated.
The Federal Court ruled Tuesday that Justin Trudeau’s invocation of the Emergencies Act – both the decision to apply it and the measures he used it to impose – were illegal.
In other words, there was no “national emergency” rising to the wartime levels intended by the act. And even if there had been, the government unjustifiably violated Canadians’ constitutional rights.
The decision was handed down, coincidentally, on the two year anniversary of the Freedom Convoy’s launch from Delta, B.C.
When Trudeau invoked the Emergencies Act, he assured Canadians that the Charter of Rights and Freedoms would be respected. His evidence was thin: the guarantee that Charter rights would be protected was seemingly predicated only on the fact that the law says Charter rights must be protected. I’d call it circular logic but even “logic” seems a bit of a stretch.
As I remarked then, if you have to pinky swear to Canadians that you’re upholding their rights, you aren’t. A well-respected judge on the Federal Court now agrees.
While the Freedom Convoy was an unprecedented demonstration (globally, not just by Canadian standards), Trudeau’s response put Canada on the map in all the wrong ways. It was condemned the world over, even by the Chinese Communist Party and Iran’s former president. Not that I put too much stock in what they think, but when you go too far for even the dictators, you should probably reassess.
The crackdown illuminated the authoritarian impulse in Canada’s “sunny ways” government. The convoy was a response to Covid restrictions, but also an increasingly divisive and vindictive approach to politics by Trudeau that vilified people based on their vaccine status and ultimately their political views.
Unfortunately for Trudeau, his denigration of convoy supporters as a “fringe minority” with “unacceptable views” ended up being taken up as a badge of honour and reclaimed by the very fringe he tried so hard to marginalize.
One of our country’s most important freedoms is that of free speech.
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