February 16, 2022
They may as well be asking, “Are you now or have you ever been a member of the Communist Party?”
If you haven’t heard, the hacked list of donors to the Freedom Convoy is now being used to seek retribution against donors with threats of violence, job loss and more.
Welcome to Canada in 2022 where McCarthyism is alive and well.
Perhaps McCarthyism is the wrong comparison and this is more like the Committee of Public Safety in France. That was the committee run by Robespierre after the French Revolution to establish a list of public enemies and seek retribution.
“It’s important for Canadians to know that there will be consequences,” Prime Minister Trudeau said on his way into the House of Commons on Tuesday.
Punishment and retribution are the consequences and it is happening now.
News broke at Queen’s Park on Tuesday afternoon that Marion Ringuette, the director of communications to Ontario Solicitor General Sylvia Jones, had been fired over a $100 donation. The donation was made under the initials M.R. but activists are scouring the hacked and released donor list to find any vulnerable name.
Ringuette, a competent communications professional I had dealt with as late as 4 p.m. Tuesday on another matter, has now been fired by the Ford government at the demand of the mob.
Stella Luna Gelato, perhaps the best gelato shop in Ottawa, was forced to close – at least temporarily – over threats from people upset at the owner’s donation. Owner Tammy Giuliani said she donated because the convoy and its call to end COVID restrictions seemed like a beacon of hope for her and other small business owners.
“It’s no surprise that small businesses have been on the edge. Families are at risk of losing their livelihood. I’m a sucker for a grassroots cause,” Giuliani told Postmedia on Monday.
Now, she’s facing threats of physical violence from those opposed to the convoy.
“In retrospect it was bad judgment, but does that mean that people have a right to threaten our staff? Does it mean people have the right to threaten to throw bricks though our window and to threaten my family?” Giuliani asked.
In Burlington, a man walked into a bakery on Tuesday screaming at and threatening the employees because the owner had made a donation to the convoy.
So much for peace, love and understanding.
Meanwhile, David’s Tea, a Canadian success story, is under threat not because the company donated or the people running the company donated but because the founder’s wife donated. Emily Segal’s donation record makes no mention of David’s Tea, does not use a company email or any other identifying markers, but someone looked through the postal code to make the connection.
How dare this woman donate to this cause! Doesn’t her husband David Segal know how to keep his woman in line! Boycott his company!
Is this really what we are about now?
We have had violent protests in this country in the past – I’ve covered many of them in Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal and Quebec City. But I’ve never seen the government nor the public go after the funders of those incidents where property has been destroyed, people hurt and public institutions violently attacked.
We’ve had protest movements in Canada, funded by foreign organizations, use protests and other tactics to vilify and shut down key industries like oil and gas and we haven’t gone after the funders or participants. In fact, some of those people have risen to high office such as Trudeau’s environment minister Steven Guilbeault or his former top advisor Gerry Butts.
Now, faced with protests that have caused far less damage than others, progressive Canada is on a search and destroy mission to punish anyone who disagrees with them.
And you thought electing Justin Trudeau was all about sunny ways.