Letter to the Editor – Freedom Convoy

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Dear Editor,

In regard to William Van Dam’s February 16 apologia The Freedom Truckers. He is dismayed by the allegations of hatred, racism, homophobia, misogyny, etc. However, all – and more covered by his etc. – have been duly reported in many media. Mr. Van Dam’s Op-Ed is a clear statement of misinformation promulgated by convoy planners and their vocal supporters, chiefly Tamara Lich, Chris Barber, Benjamin Ditcher, James Bauder, and Patrick King.

The media accounts of these individuals’ postings and activities are online, so I’ll offer information in brief.

Tamara Lich, a co-founder of the truckers protest, was a principal in the anti-immigration Yellow Vest Canada movement, a member of the Western separatist Maverick Party, and was once active in the Wildrose Party.

Chris Barber is a co-founder of the protest. As a regular on TikTok, he has warned of riot police coming to Ottawa, snipers on roof tops, that authorities will black-out protester telecommunications, and he’d wear a tinfoil hat if that happened.

B.J. Dichter, known for spreading anti-Islamist views, told Fox News that before the pandemic, Alberta looked like a “third-world country.” He failed as a federal Conservative candidate in 2015, and in the last federal election spoke at a People’s Party of Canada rally, claiming some members of the Conservative Party of Canada had ties to “Islamic extremism.”

Canada Unity, a participant group in the organization of the convoy, was founded by James Bauder, who claims Covid-19 originated in China as a bio-weapon. He supports QAnon conspiracy theories. Canada Unity claims vaccine mandates and passports are illegal under Canada’s constitution, the Nuremberg Code, and other international conventions.

Pat King is known for racist videos and supporting white supremacist ideology.

Reporting is widely available for readers to investigate. The information I have shared is primarily from two sources: Who is who? A guide to the major players in the trucker convoy protest www.ctvnews.ca/canada/who-is-who-a-guide-to-the-major-players-in-the-trucker-convoy-protest-1.5776441; and EXPLAINER: A look at what’s behind the protests in Canada  https://apnews.com/article/coronavirus-pandemic-business-health-ottawa-justin-trudeau-2d721f31cf03120a460c03c7a4b0157f.

Michael Whittaker

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