The caravan of protesting truckers is, we hear, now on the way to Washington, D.C., after thoroughly disrupting Calgary, Canada, and perceptions of Justin Trudeau as a relatively harmless boob. He is now being seen as a harmful boob. D.C., meanwhile, has established itself as a locale where disruptive and even violent protesters are honored by a giant painted endorsement on a public street by order of the mayor when their alleged cause is sufficiently “woke,” and violent protesters from the other side of the ideological spectrum are charged with felonies and held in prison for many months.
This should be interesting, in the old Chinese saying sense.
Here is Ethics Alarms veteran Glenn Logan’s Comment of the Day on the post, “Ethics Quote Of The Week: Naomi Wolf”…
I think in the end, the best complaint available is the double-standards being applied. When protests are ostensibly in favor of a left-liberal position, they are protected speech no matter how much lawlessness is involved. That same protest involving the same level of lawlessness is considered worthy of an emergency act invocation if the protest is not favored by left-liberals.
I get your point about the trucks blocking traffic Jack, and I don’t disagree. I have always believed that interfering in lawful commerce is illegal (and tortious as well) and should be prosecuted both criminally and by civil action when it happens. The First Amendment, and whatever the Canadian equivalent is (however weakly codified) does not protect actions that interfere with lawful commerce or disturb the peace to the point of mischief. Continue reading
“It is alarming that our own President has not spoken out against Justin Trudeau’s militaristic power grab, or against his violence against peaceful protesters using their lawfully protected freedoms of speech and assembly. It is even more alarming that the Biden administration is seeking to extend our own state of emergency.”
Naomi Wolf, on her substack newletter, in a post called “The Fall of Canada, The Danger in the US.”
You should read it all. Wolf is troubled by the continuation of the “state of emergency” in the U.S. regarding the pandemic, which she weaves into her protest about the dangers of martial law and the risks when democratic nations start justifying dictatorial powers.
I ran across her piece as I was preparing to write a post titled, “Stop Making Me Defend Justin Trudeau.” The trucker protest may involve free speech, the right to protest and the right to assemble; I guess it is peaceful, or was until Trudeau called in the cops. However, no protest is lawful if it involves breaking laws, and using huge trucks to block highways and commuter access to where they need to go is not legal anywhere. Geraldo Rivera and Sean Hannity got into an angry tiff last week, which Hannity telling Geraldo that his criticism of the trucker protest was an affront to liberty and human rights, and Rivera responding that innocent people and businesses were being harmed by the protest, and it needed to end. For one of the first times in my life, I’m with Geraldo. Continue reading
Is this an Ethics Train Wreck, defined as a situation where everyone involved in in the wrong? If it isn’t, to paraphrase Tommy Lee Jones’s burned-out sheriff in “No Country for Old Men,” it will do until a real one shows up.
We begin with the impetus for the protest. Truckers, alone in their cabs, pose no danger to anyone whether they are vaccinated or not, masked or not. Social distancing is enough when you’re alone inside a moving truck. The pandemic restrictions are increasingly obnoxious and irrational—unethical in short, “following the science” of experts who have been wrong (or lying) so often it would be funny if it hasn’t been so disastrous. Ethics Alarms is on record as holding that most protests are pointless and unethical, but not all. There is ample justification for truckers to protest what is, for them, oppressive government edicts.
BUT…this protest is violating the law, as well as inconveniencing and harming citizens who are not at fault for the policies the truckers are protesting. The truckers have paralyzed traffic, disrupted business and unsettled residential neighborhoods, as truckers parked their vehicles in intersections and across busy thoroughfares. “Someone is going to get killed or seriously injured because of the irresponsible behavior of some of these people,” Jim Watson, Ottawa’s mayor, said as he declared the situation a state of emergency. I don’t see how anyone can dispute that conclusion, and sympathy with the truckers’ position shouldn’t translate into acceptance of their mode of protest, Continue reading