Like millions of other Canadian having had their lives torn apart by this pandemic, I am tired of listening to people whine about “lock-downs”, mask-wearing, or the “questionable” benefit of the three major vaccines currently being used to immunize us to the deadly effects created by the Covid-19 virus.
I sincerely believe that any politician, including our premier, who panders to such bleating should be removed from office. This doesn’t mean that I don’t understand public concern as to their ability to trust Big Pharma and its moral underpinnings of greed. However, this American giant of ethical impurities actually shared research notes with competitors in a fevered attempt to create THREE highly effective products with 85% effectiveness in developing antibodies to this disease.
Moreover, when taken twice, then “boosted”, these products give you a 94% chance or better for living should you still catch this disease. My cynicism notwithstanding, that’s better odds than you get on bar or casino slot machines.
What irks me even more is that only “celebrity” guests on right-wing cable news networks, many without credible medical credentials, question the efficacy of these products – even when they and their host talking heads are fully vaccinated themselves. One doesn’t need a Bill Gates nanobot in my bloodstream to expose the hypocrisy endemic in this Alex Jones / Q-Anon right-wing conspiracy campaign – even if I’m creating this column using Microsoft Word.
Here in Canada our extreme right-wing elements have their own theme for ridiculing the nation’s progress or lack thereof in minimizing the social and emotional side effects of this pandemic – “Blame Justin.” To Scott Moe and Jason Kenney, maintaining the support of anti-vaxxers, anti-maskers and anti-carbon tax adherents is essential to their remaining in power beyond the next political election. Independent MLA Nadine Wilson’s revised agenda to find some “inclusion of all” in “balancing” governmental action while protecting an ambiguous list of “human rights and privileges” is just a sideshow, and the only survival technique they can see working in Saskatchewan or Alberta is to keep up the hate campaign against the trust fund child of former PM Pierre Trudeau.
So far, the Prime Minister has been able to parry the Moe-Kenney agenda by prying fiscal hawk and Ontario premier Doug Ford away from continuing to support the two prairie premiers, even to the point of accepting an NDP voice in helping to fight this virus. However, here’s the problem with him having to devote so much time to creating effective health policies for Canada – as what occurred when the American media could not produce news broadcasts for four years without first leading with another Donald Trump story, stories that portend a more substantive effect upon our everyday lives are being lost in our coverage of the Covid media freak show.
We are currently facing the prospect of a global war erupting should the Russian army be directed by Vladimir Putin to invade the Ukraine. Are the inane babblings of Koch-funded shills writing economic “treatises” on “inflationary pressures” and a “spiraling federal deficit” more important than the prospect of our armed forces being drawn into a potential war – in partnership with a Trump-weakened American military and NATO partners now doubting the commitment of a nation once glorified as the world’s police force?
Meanwhile, here in Canada we stupidly turn our attention towards a conglomerate of long haul transport drivers intending to send still another “caravan” to Ottawa to “protest” being required to be double-vaccinated prior to crossing our international border with the U.S.A. These truckers aren’t members of a workers’” movement”, but merely recycled participants in Scott Moe’s heated rallies over Ottawa’s “imposition” of a carbon tax for the province. Their message is simple: governments imposing lock-downs, curfews and masking requirements are the weapons of “tyranny” imposed by government to restrict privileges they misrepresent as “rights and freedoms”.
This time around, all Canadians should ridicule the formation of this “truckers’ caravan” making its way towards Ottawa. These are not the same drivers who show courtesy and discipline on our highways – the real truckers interested in both their own safety and the protection of their clients’ healthy work environment saw the writing on the wall and voluntarily went out and got vaccinated when the first lock-downs occurred.
Gas stations should refuse to refuel vehicles associated with the convoy, and restaurant owners should think twice before staff end up being abused by their patrons when attempting to enforce provincial guidelines regarding masking. More to the point the media has to stop portraying their “protest” as some uprising inspired by Covid’s debilitating effects upon societal norms, when it is nothing more than a selfish expression of narcissistic libertarianism.
The fight against governmental actions taken while fighting the issues created by this pandemic are nothing more than a skirmish being fought by right-wing trolls intent upon maintaining control of political power. Issues involving the siege by Russia of the Ukraine, on the other hand, is a fight where once started, real bullets are fired from Russian and NATO guns – which is why you won’t be seeing any Oath-Keepers, Proud Boys, or persons in uniform with last names such as Trump, Gaetz, Taylor-Green, Bezos, or the grandsons of Mitch McConnell on the front lines of this skirmish. Only sons and daughters of minority groups truly believing in the democratic process will be performing those duties.
We do not need a repetition of news items showing our finest soldiers being returned to Canada for a final ride down “The Highway of Heroes” before being interred in a military graveyard. Vietnam and Afghanistan have destroyed whatever feelings remain for Americans to pretend that they are still “the land of the brave and the home of the free.” unfortunately, they are not alone in their cynicism – this has happened only because we’ve failed to realize that true “news” is NOT entertainment, but rather an expression of art pictorializing and narrating the events of history.
When our media again get around to embracing that principle, it will finally see the cessation of the cynicism that has those on both sides of a political narrative questioning its accuracy and worth.
Now might just be a good time for us all to wake up to this reality.