But of course it is about the Freedom Convoy as a whole and is a direct challenge and indeed a repudiation of every Canadian’s right to free speech, free assembly and to protest government policy they not only disagree with but consider dangerous to their person and health.
We concluded Day 8 of this trial on Thursday, what was supposed to be the midpoint of a 16-day process that has become almost hopelessly entangled in the prosecution’s minutiae. I have spent entire days in the courtroom while they showed pictures of snowdrifts to their witness, Ottawa Police Service Sgt. Joanne Pilotte, and asked her if she remembered seeing this image before.
I’m waiting for Monty Python’s Spanish Inquisition and the comfy chair skit to play next.
We have already reported how the Crown dropped thousands of undisclosed social media messages on the court last week, causing the judge to comment that she was “very unhappy.” That’s never a good place to be for either the prosecution or the defence in any trial but the Crown is consistently putting Justice Heather Perkins-McVey in that same angry corner.
More than one courtroom observer has noted to me that it looks like the prosecution is just “throwing sh** against the wall and hoping it sticks.”
So far, little of the “evidence” presented looks in any way damaging to Lich or Barber. The pair were present at numerous news conferences while the Convoy was in Ottawa and sent out a myriad of social media posts to protest participants and the world. In almost every broadcast they can be heard telling – pleading with – the truckers and other supporters to protest peacefully, to not get in the face of Ottawa residents and to listen to the instructions of police and obey them.
During one message, Barber even suggests that the Trudeau government will try to turn the protest into a “January 6-style insurrection.” Barber can be forgiven for not knowing at the time that what happened in Washington, D.C. on Jan. 6, 2021 was no insurrection but a Democratic frame-up but he was trying to warn everyone involved in the demonstration that every action they took, every word they spoke to reporters or social media could be used against them by a hostile government.
That hostile government would freeze the bank accounts of those truckers and anyone who donated to their cause. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, too craven and confused to even meet with the truckers on the street or in his office, would decide that a peaceful protest in Canada’s national capital was just so dangerous, so monumentally subversive to his authoritarian government that it had to be met with the something called the Emergencies Act – effectively martial law – that culminated in police assaulting protesters and running over one woman with a horse.
The charges against Lich and Barber seem not just inappropriate given their constant encouragement of non-violent protest and the very violent reaction of the Trudeau government – but ludicrous in the extreme. And if the justice system insisted that charges be laid, it should not require over a month in an Ottawa courtroom to convict or acquit them.
What is not widely known is that others were also charged for their participation in the Freedom Convoy and their trials are either just beginning or coming up soon. I spoke with Byron Carr on Thursday, a trucker from Cochrane, AB, who plans to defend himself by saying the invocation of the Emergencies Act was illegal because the Trudeau government could never “produce documentation” that a real threat existed to national security that justified the use of such a draconian act.
Of Trudeau himself, Carr told The Post Millennial, “He did treasonous acts to Canada. Let's step back really quick and remember the fact that we all went into lockdown because all of these mandates when he was fully knowing in his mindset that these vaccinations weren’t any good for the public.”
You can say that this trial is an international embarrassment for Canada – and I’ve said it multiple times. But it is equally embarrassing that during the presidency of Joe Biden, scores of people were incarcerated without bail for merely walking into the Capitol building on Jan. 6 and expressing their lack of confidence in the 2020 presidential election.
Meanwhile thousands of thugs and hooligans – many following the orders of Black Lives Matter - who looted, destroyed property and set fire to buildings were never prosecuted for these real crimes.
No doubt Trudeau wouldn’t have invoked the Emergencies Act against BLM riots; he went to their event in Ottawa and descended to one knee in support.
Of course, there is another irony in this trial. It is occurring just as Trudeau is sending out signals that he is prepared to wage another lockdown war on Canadians. The bizarre news conference this week with Canadian chief public health office Theresa Tam all masked-up and a water-carrying mainstream media reporter gushing about how wonderful it was, spoke volumes.
Tam told us, “Now is the time to get your mask ready.”
No, now is the time to remember that the Freedom Convoy came to Ottawa to defeat nonsensical and febrile Covid mandates.
And as Lich and Barber fight for their freedom, we must continue to fight for ours.
Not one step back into lockdowns and mandate madness.