I am not sure what I expected to see.
I am not sure what I wanted to see.
What I did see though was not a group which is doing anybody any favors.
I have been outspoken against many lockdown measures and controls on businesses and individuals. I am still concerned about government overreach and what it will take to get rid of these controls being dropped upon us when the pandemic has finally run its course.
In going downtown to the rally yesterday, I was expecting to hear from and meet with other people with rational concerns. I was to be disappointed.
What I found was a disparate group of people with all sorts of chips on their shoulders with the government. Again, an attitude that I can understand and relate to. The concerns and the solutions proposed by many though were simply too far from the realm of reality to be taken seriously.
I wandered the periphery and chatted with a few folks. On the outsides of the crowd (500 at best), I did tend to find more people who were concerned and curious like myself. They tended not to stay long as it became evident that this was not going to become anything productive.
As with Dante’s Inferno, the deeper you travelled into the circle, the more intense things became.
Many denied that there was a pandemic at all which was to be expected though I don’t agree.. People I spoke with deeper in the crowd explained to me how 5G networks had actually been transmitting and spreading the virus and were all part of a Chinese conspiracy which Trudeau was a part of. Others explained to me on how this whole thing was a conspiracy to force vaccines upon us all which would control our minds. I stopped asking people what they thought once I got into the center.
There were two stands set up. One was March for Freedom which blared music (Ironically “Imagine” was one of the songs I heard) and opposed government controls but was still difficult to pin down as a group or a movement with a distinct goal. I can’t even find a solid web source of what they are.
Another was “Unify the People”. They had a great number of signs out and have an impressive number of painted vehicles which promote their cause. They were selling merchandise and did seem to be the most organized. I have encountered them before as they have set up micro-demonstrations throughout the city for months now.
You can click on the link for the “Unify the People” movement in the image above. If you are into 1990s circa web sites, you will be impressed. You can then take a deep dive into their theory that confederation never existed, we are all “sovereigns” and how they will guide us all to a free new world.
They are just another incarnation of the “Freeman of the Land” or the old “Detax” movement. They never grow nor go away.
I also saw perhaps a dozen of the Proud Boys.
I don’t want to get into discussions on whether or not the Proud Boys have been fairly labelled or what they do or don’t stand for. What I will say is that they distract from any rational discussion or demonstration questioning pandemic response by the government.
I feel that these people have the right to demonstrate and that they should not be shut down. I do feel that the majority of the people there were not crazy, they were simply very concerned about the state of things in light of the pandemic.
Right now though, the crazy/rational ratio is still way to high to make these demonstrations productive or meaningful. If the state does truly overstep its bounds, we will hit a tipping point and thousands will come out. The folks worried about the lizard people controlling the world will be overwhelmed with the common citizens demonstrating. I think we are seeing that tipping point happening in Ontario where the state has been far more intrusive and people have had enough. Alberta is clearly not there yet.
If and when Alberta hits that tipping point, I may very well be down there holding a sign rather than observing others doing it. For now though, there is little being accomplished in these demonstrations aside from giving statists fodder to falsely claim that everybody who opposes a full lockdown is crazy.