To the Public Emergency Commission

To the Public Emergency Commission

October 20, 2022

The last year of my life shook my world view and changed my political affiliations. I am still waiting to see normalcy return but I suspect we now live in a new world where my individual rights are no longer respected or protected. I am frightened for our country and for our future.  And it seems the worries are not over. Even now the Prime Minister continues to threaten ‘health measures’ and push new booster shots of an experimental medical injection that has not proved to be particularly effective nor entirely safe.

We need to examine how the Prime Minister got away with invoking the Emergency Measures Act. Instead of meeting with the Canadian citizens that were waiting for him Trudeau called in faceless soldiers to trample on Canadian citizens involved in a peaceful protest. In leaping to the Emergency Measures Act, the PM gave his government powers far beyond the normal reach. The political over reaction and overreach was unconscionable and we need to make sure it will not happen again.

I never thought I would see the day that I feared the Canadian government but when the government invoked the Emergency Measures Act, it became clear that Canadians were living under a totalitarian government. With the media in his pocket, it seemed the PM could do whatever he wanted. If the Canadian government can take away employment and unemployment insurance and freeze bank accounts under the guise of an unnecessary Emergency Measures Act, what else were they going to do?  Was my house safe, my savings, my pension?

I began to wonder if democracy was an empty concept.  As I found myself clearing off my posts on Facebook in order to look for more work, I wondered if my right to free speech had always been so precarious.  Had the government always censored information that they did not want us to read?  When I was blocked from crossing provincial and federal borders, I had to wonder, had my freedom of movement always been so vulnerable?

Last fall my husband lost his job at the Federal government department where he had worked for the last twenty years. He was close to retirement and working from home, as were all his colleagues.  I feared we would lose our home and all our savings.  I worried that we would be barred from hospitals if we were in need. I wondered if I would ever be allowed to see my other children who lived further away. I saw my youngest son’s future collapsing. Would he be blocked from getting a driver’s license, working or going to university?

As the winter continued and the threats mounted, we considered leaving Canada. It was astounding.  We could barely believe what was happening. My family is still shaken by the changes that were wrought last year. When we saw the footage of the countless trucks heading to the capital city, we felt relief, pride and fellowship. Their sacrifice, their bravery, their resilience, their determination, gave us hope and lifted our hearts.

My husband and I joined the protest on a freezing day in February. We stamped our frozen feet and waved our Canadian flag on a local highway overpass, along with a professor from our local university, a farmer, a young Muslim couple and a lesbian couple and their kids. We also watched the live streams of footage from the Trucker’s Convoy (‘disinformation’ that Bill C-11 would censor for our protection) and it gave us hope.

We were proud of the protestors.  The protestors were kind to each other, fed the homeless, hugged and danced. French Canadians and English Canadians were united. Established citizens and new immigrants, men and women, they were all united in their stand against the mandates. It was our observations that police had good relations with the protestors. If they asked the protesters to park on one side of the road, the protesters complied.  When the honking became too loud, they agreed on limited time periods. The protesters cleaned and cared for the monuments.  Negotiations and compromises were being made and there were many Ottawa citizens who were offering the truckers food and a place to shower.

It was a peaceful protest and all the Prime Minister had to do to end the protest was to meet with them. They were reasonable people, and they wanted a solution.  The invocation of the Emergencies Act was a heartbreaking end to a beautiful protest. It was devastating when the faceless soldiers were trucked in to disperse the organized and peaceful Canadian workers.

Many of the protestors that I saw interviewed during the two weeks were immigrants who came to Canada to escape totalitarian governments. They expected to be heard by their elected official and were disappointed and disgusted by Trudeau and his government.  If the government’s actions were not such a tragedy for democratic principles, it could be seen as a farce. Trudeau’s actions will go down in history as the shameful moment the Liberal government treated Canadian citizens like terrorists.

The Liberals barely won their election and they do not speak for many Canadians. Trudeau’s ‘liberals’ are acting in a tyrannical manner, and we need to remind them that they are elected officials who are accountable to Canadian citizens.  Their efforts to push through C-11 is alarming. Will the democratic government of Canada regulate what we can read, and what we can post?  I am seriously concerned with the state of democracy in our country.  

When PM Trudeau invoked the Emergencies Measures Act, he did not meet the legally binding conditions that must be satisfied before it be invoked. I want this recognized, and I want an apology.  Trudeau has made a tactical mistake; he showed his true colours. His loyalty to the World Economic Forum is stronger than his loyalty to Canadians. The invocation of the Emergencies Act was damaging to our global reputation as a free and democratic country. 

Meg Dallas Edwards                                                                            Baie Verte, New Brunswick

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