Our Police and Government Leaders Have Got to Put an End to this Selfish, Dangerous Nonsense
Enough $880 Slaps on the Wrist. $100,000 Fines and Criminal Charges Are in Order
A Commentary by Niagara At Large reporter and publisher Doug Draper
Posted April 30th, 2021 on Niagara At Large
In the Thorold neighbourhood where I live, one homeowner has erected a sign in front of their yard that reads; “No More Lockdowns.”
A first glance at the sign has me saying; “Okay. Who wants more lockdowns? I can’t think of anyone who is not waiting for the day when can all go back to something that resembles a normal life again.”
I have a young daughter who, like so many of her 20-somethng and 30-something friends, was concerned enough about finding steady, decent-paying work before this pandemic started. So who doesn’t want to see an end of lockdowns and stay-at-home orders for them?
But that is not what those leading and supporting the so-called ‘No More Lockdowns Canada’ movement is about.
It is not about the majority of us staying at home unless we absolutely have to go out for food, etc, or about wearing masks and social distancing when we are out, or about applying over and over again for an appointment to get a COVID-19 vaccine – all because we want to protect ourselves and each other in the hope that we can crush the curve on this pandemic so the lockdowns will be over.
This is about a relatively small but highly vocal minority of people spinning Trumpy, QAnon-like conspiracy tales about this world-wide health catastrophe being exaggerated or a hoax.
It is about theses people chanting out loud in opposition to wearing masks, and it is about them branding the vaccines many of us see as the way out of this nightmare as a form of “biological warfare” – the kind of baseless garbage one can hear on Fox News.
At two anti-lockdown rallies in St. Catharines and Niagara Falls earlier this April, chants of ‘hoax’ and ‘biological warfare’ rang loudly. The April 10th St. Catharines rally was attended by more than a thousand people, including some of Niagara’s elected municipal leaders like West Lincoln Mayor and Niagara Regional Councillor David Bylsma and veteran Thorold city councillor Jim Handley.
Now, there is another one of these rallies planned at the foot a cenotaph honouring those who fought and died in past wars, located in the downtown area of St. Catharines, in Memorial Park on West St. Paul Street.
In an article published in The St. Catharines Standard today, Lloyd Cull, a Niagara area commander with the Royal Canadian Legion, stated that “this is not about what this cenotaph is all about.”
“We use the cenotaph on Remembrance Day to honour all our veterans and make sure they are not forgotten,” Cull was quoted saying. “Protesting because you don’t like the lockdown and don’t want to wear a piece of cloth over your mouth is ridiculous. If a mask saves one life, it is worth it.”
I have had some of these anti-lockdown insist to me in interviews that “they have their constitutional rights.” And these lockdown and stat-at-home restrictions violate those rights, they insist.
Yet what about the rights of the rest of us to live – to try to avoid being infected with ever more infectious and dangerous variants of a virus that could possibly kill us? There is something in Canada’s constitution about a right to life too.
And what about any sense of social or community responsibility around something called the common good?
These people seem totally oblivious to that and here they go to a cenotaph remembering wars where people like my parents and grandparents willingly rationed and sacrificed some of their freedom of movement to support our side fighting off real fascism – not the imaginary fascism these selfish people yell about because they are being asked, for what we all hope won’t be a long time, not to walk around mask-less in a shopping mall.
They ought to be ashamed of themselves and hopefully our Niagara Regional Police and other authorities will see that those who attend these pro-COVID-19 rallies (because that is what they really are, about liberating the virus) are charged with the maximum fines possible, which begin at about $880 and continue on upward to $100,000.
Rather than ending lockdowns, the reckless behavior of these Covidiots place all of us – our families and friends, our businesses and our communities – at risk of these lockdowns and this pandemic raging on and killing more people even longer.
To read some earlier posts on Niagara At Large on this issue, click on the links below –
NIAGARA AT LARGE Encourages You To Join The Conversation By Sharing Your Views On This Post In The Space Following The Bernie Sanders Quote Below.