Now What February – Drunk

As I’m sure some of you might have heard, there are protestors in Ottawa.

Now, I haven’t lived here long enough to say this properly, but I think that the city is well equipped to handle protestors. It is the centre of our national government, after all. Last fall people from my old school came to Ottawa to protest the war in Artsakh. It was planned and peaceful and lasted one day.

But the legitimate protestors have left and what remains is now being classified as an “occupation” by fringe groups. Thankfully, I am far enough away from all of that that I’m not really affected. Like if I wanted to go to the Natural History Museum this weekend, I couldn’t because it is closed due to the protestors, but let’s be real – it’s February in Ottawa, it feels like -28 out there and I am only planning on going to the dollar store later this afternoon.

What really is horrible about these protestors is that they are in the wrong place. They are here to protest the mandates put in place to keep us safe during covid. I understand these measures suck. Everyone gets that. But these fringe groups who are staying are 1) in the wrong place, and 2) only causing further lockdowns which is what they are protesting against.

So let’s talk about this for a second, 1) they are in the wrong place.

Health care decisions are made by the provincial government. Not the federal government. So sitting in Ottawa blocking streets, causing noise and air pollution, destroying people’s businesses which are already hit hard by the pandemic, is doing basically nothing except causing mental health issues for those living downtown. For the most part, they are honking and protesting in front of an empty building.

And 2) only affecting residents and businesses who can’t open.

The downtown core has been basically shut down for over a week now. People can’t leave their houses, they can’t open their businesses, can’t go shopping. The Rideau Centre is completely closed – which I think is the biggest mall in Ottawa? It employs thousands, and people have essential businesses in there which can’t open because of these protestors. A lady on the news two nights ago says she can’t get to her pharmacy because the road there is closed but also because the building itself is closed. She needs her medication but can’t get it. Seniors in apartments are saying they are basically locked in their apartments for fear of going out, but also because transit can’t reach them anymore because of the road closures.

These protestors came two days before mandates were lifted which allowed businesses to open up again, but the downtown core has had to close up entirely. For stores that were allowed to run (maybe curbside or take out only or at 25% or 50% whatever) and were just barely scraping by during that time, now it’s a full closure for the safety of their staff.

The protestors are maskless, drunk in the streets, defecating in bags and leaving them on the ground (a person I work with found a bag in front of her condo while coming to work on Wednesday). They have built a wooden structure which is now serving at their kitchen (and the police are looking to have it taken down), housing who knows how many containers of fuel which is a fie hazard. Bridges from Quebec have been shut down, essential workers who cross them every day (and legit anyone who needs to cross over) can’t. All 4 bridges have been affected. From the news last night, one only was open then and at reduced traffic. Rocks and racial slurs are being thrown at paramedics, emergency vehicles can’t operate within the city core properly because of the trucks taking up the roads, I’m not even sure if the plows were able to get to some of the residential streets after the snow this week. People who leave their homes with masks on are being harassed by these fringe groups, our war monuments are being desecrated, statues of national heroes like Terry Fox as well.

They are in this weird limbo where the land they are on is technically the city of Ottawa’s but also over Federal jurisdiction, so the police or the RCMP or the army don’t know (or can’t? it’s unclear to me) what measures they can take.

And the absolute worst part of all of this is on the residents of that area in Ottawa. Round the clock honking, not being able to sleep, having the constant smell of diesel in the air, being harrassed by these people who refuse to leave. The actual residents are the ones suffering. Not the government which they want to pressure. And again, if they want health measures to end, they need to be doing this in Toronto where the premier is, not in Ottawa.

And I get it, we all want this to end. At this point I personally think there should just be a mask mandate and a vaccine passport for very specific indoor places where your mask would be off (sporting events, movie theatres, restaurants, schools) and for the rest, it’s time to end it.

To both the occupiers of the city, and the other restrictions, I say enough is enough.

Answered in part of whatsandrathinks’ now what? February prompts.

15 thoughts on “Now What February – Drunk

  1. I think people are getting tired of living by decree. Looks like Europe is starting their awakening with some countries dropping all mandates. I hope Canada and the US follow soon.

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    • I think its time to stop just locking everything down. Its too much! Especially since the variants are lessening in severity. I think most mandates should be dropped. Masks I think need to be around a bit longer. Maybe into the spring. And like I said in my post, vaccine status for very specific non-essential places. But thats it in my mind. The rest can go haha

      Liked by 1 person

    • I don’t think Canada should drop the mask mandate, but I imagine the lockdowns could stop. We haven’t had proper restrictions in months in the UK and personally, I think it’s not a good thing at all. Hospitals are overwhelmed, people are dying or cancer or worsened health conditions after not being able to see their GP in over two years, crowded places (i.e. pretty much everywhere) feel unsafe due to people coughing their faces off without masks on, etc. Wearing a mask indoor is not a massive hindrance and they should probably stay.

      Liked by 2 people

        • I’m double jabbed so that’s not the issue.
          Masks protect those around more than the wearer. If people are coughing in enclosed spaces without masks on, it puts everyone at risk and particularly the most vulnerable.
          Some people have been stuck inside for over two years now, unable to do their own shopping or see their doctor because the safety goalposts keep moving (see: https://mobile.twitter.com/StephTaitWrites/status/1487474564816797696). If my wearing a mask to do my weekly shop can help disabled people get back to some semblance of normalcy, why not wear one? It’s not a lot to ask from relatively healthy individuals, but it has a HUGE impact on the lives of these people.

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          • I’m doubled jab, but that supposed to protect me. I think that the latest science says that the cloth masks don’t work, and people who had the vaccine can still get the virus and spread the virus. I also wear a mask, but mostly due to mandates where I live. Aside from that, choices that the government makes seems strange. For example, shutting down small mom and pop shops, where there is less congregations of people, but letting big stores, like Walmart to remain open. It’s baffling.

            Liked by 2 people

            • Well, cloth masks should have never been more than a temporary measure until everyone could get surgical/N95 masks in the first place. I just think that masks are the simplest way for everyone to protect themselves and those around them, whether they are or not vaccinated, but I agree with you that some government decisions have been questionable.

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    • Yeaaah its insane! The gofundme page raised over 10million and now they are shutting it down because the site deems it to be an illegal occupation now. So the money will be refunded. And there is a class action law suit being filled against the organizers by the residents of the city core who are most affected

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  2. Same thing happening here. I’m in our Capital and we have a huge group of fringe loonies here who are protesting vaccine mandates. Thing is, there is no law to be vaccinated, however state governments can require specific jobs to have a vaccine mandate (like all nurses require a bunch of vaccinations, not just covid). They are here because Parliament sits from this week – but the Federal Government has nothing to do with job requirements, that’s the state governments *sigh*.

    Liked by 1 person

    • A lot of jobs require it here but that was the company’s choice not the government’s. And if you dont habe it, you have to be rapid tested. One of our staff wasn’t and in August it seemed like it was a firm “im not getting it” but then he got sick in late September and quickly got hia first dose after. Im not sure his reasons for not but 🤷‍♀️ otherwise he has to be rapid tested every 2 or 3 days at work.

      The protests now are popping up all over the county. And here in Ottawa there were COUNTER protests at city hall to protest the protest lol I’m so glad I live away from all that

      Liked by 1 person

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