The New York Times editors supported the right of Canadian truckers to protest, saying that peaceful demonstrations are a vital part of democracy.
Freedom Convoy protests against COVID-19 vaccination mandates, which have frozen Ottawa for more than two weeks, have sharply divided opinion in the US.
Conservatives tend to cheer on the demonstrators, while many liberal pundits are calling for a quick and hard crackdown on the protests by any means necessary.
However, the leftist editorial of the Times broke down and said the demonstration in Ottawa “looks like a nuisance” and should be tolerated in the name of freedom of speech.
“Resolving non-violent, even if destructive, protests is an important tool for maintaining social cohesion in a polarized society,” the council’s article says.
The New York Times editorial board called Justin Trudeau to account, saying truckers in Canada have the right to protest as he considers using emergency powers.
A Canadian-flagged demonstrator walks in front of vehicles as truckers and their supporters block downtown Ottawa on Monday.
Freedom Convoy demonstrators outside the Parliament of Canada on Sunday
“We do not agree with the cause of the protesters, but they have the right to be noisy and even destructive,” the board wrote.
“Protests are a necessary form of expression in a democratic society, especially for those whose opinions do not enjoy widespread popular support,” the essay says.
“Governments have a responsibility to prevent violence from protesters, but they must be prepared to tolerate some degree of disruption from those who want to be heard.”
The essay compared the current Freedom Convoy protests to the 2020 Black Lives Matter demonstrations, saying that in both cases, government officials had to balance public safety concerns with the right to free expression.
“It is wrong to entertain the use of force to disperse or contain legitimate protests,” the editors wrote.
The essay notes that in November 2020, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau expressed support for farmers in India who blocked major highways leading to New Delhi to protest new laws to remove minimum crop prices.
Farmers have been blocking roads in New Delhi for over a year to protest the new laws. In November 2020, Trudeau said he supported the protests.
The New York Times editorial board came out in support of Canadian truckers’ right to protest, saying that peaceful demonstrations are a vital part of democracy.
“Canada will always stand up for the right to protest peacefully,” Trudeau said during protests in India that have continued for a year.
Now, Trudeau is reportedly planning to use the Canadian Emergency Act, which grants powers that have only been used once in peacetime, to initiate a federal crackdown on “Freedom Escort” demonstrators.
Trudeau, in a rare meeting Monday with his Liberal caucus, said he planned to enforce the law but denied any plans to deploy the military, people familiar with the matter told the CBC.
With protesters cleared from the key Ambassador Bridge, where about 30 protesters were arrested on Sunday, mass demonstrations continue to paralyze the streets of Ottawa, with protesters blocking several border crossings in western Canada.
Protesters were removed from the key Ambassador Bridge, where about 30 protesters were arrested on Sunday.
The Emergency Situations Act of 1988 allows the federal government to override the provinces and authorize special temporary security arrangements during national emergencies anywhere in the country.
The law, formerly known as the War Measures Act, was used only three times in Canadian history: during two world wars and in 1970 by Trudeau’s father, the late Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, after militant Quebec secessionists kidnapped a British diplomat and cabinet minister. provinces.
As tensions escalated, Ontario’s premier announced on Monday that the province would lift its COVID-19 vaccination confirmation requirements in two weeks, but said it was not because of protests against the mandate, but because “it’s safe” . So.’