The August 28th protest in front of Premier Dalton McGuinty’s office drew quite a crowd – as well as relatively heavy police presence.
At the first protest, held July 17th (photos here), there were 2 squad cars, with 2 cops each.
At the second protest, which was not held at Dalton’s McGuinty’s constituency office but at Bob Chiarelli’s (he is the Ontario Government’s Minister of Communications), there was no visible police presence at all. (Photos/write-up are here and here.)
At this third protest, the police were highly visible. Like at the first one, there were 2 squad cars with 2 officers each. However, in addition to these, there was also a paddy-wagon – just in case any protesters did not obey the rules and regulations….
Perhaps the presence of the paddy-wagon was anticipated, because this crowd is so very disruptive and destructive…. Leaving the last protest, I actually saw one of the protesters stop and pick up pieces of trash (an old pop-can, I think) which he saw on the ground on his way back to his car – oh, yes, these people are a menace to a neighbourhood!
Suzanne, from BigBlueWave, was at the protest and kindly sent me a link to the video she took of Debbie Jodoin speaking about the intimidation:
Permit me to put this into context:
Imagine that the Prime Minster’s Executive Assistant took it upon himself to send an email to your work – yourself, your co-workers and your employer(!), directed to you, advising you to remember the parking bylaws on your street…and even admonishing you to to ‘be mindful of your neighbours and their inconvenience, if you park in a way that might inconvenience them!
Then, that same Exacutive Assistant from the Prime Minister’s office went door-to-door, talking to your neighbours, asking them if you and your parking habits are inconveniencing them.
And to top it off, when you got home, imagine that there were a couple of cops – with a paddy-wagon ready to drag you off in, watching all your moves, where you parked, how you parked, how long you parked for….
Would that not be intimidating?
Well, Dalton McGuinty and his EA have about as much jurisdiction over this protest as the Prime Minister and his EA have over parking bylaws: neither the leader of the Provincial Government nor the leader of the Federal Government have any jurisdiction over municipal bylaws!
They are not responsible for them to be enforced – and it is certainly not their place to ‘remind’ law-abiding citizens to be good little slaves and obey them!
If the above comparison does not demonstrate just how intimidating this action is, think about it in these terms:
WHEN is it not intimidating for a political leader (or his EA, with the official ‘from the office of’ thingy) to send your employer an email in which he admonishes you not to break the law?
And that does not even address the content of the letter…which demands that we all agree that our unalienable right to free speech is a ‘privilege’!
But, I have already ranted on that…
One more thing: the ‘request’ from ‘above’ was that we do not go on the road (duh!), or the lane in front of the mall, or any of the sidewalks – because that would ‘block traffic’ and interfere with the businesses livelihood. In other words, we were to stand on the ‘lawn’.
Do you know what the ‘lawn’ at Dalton McGuinty’s office is composed of?
He bloody told us to go stand in ragweed! (I still have the blisters on my feet to prove it – oh, and this picture of the ‘lawn’.)
Because, this is how much the businesses were ‘blocked’ and ‘inconvenienced’ by the protesters:
I actually went into that little corner store to buy a bottle of water – it was hot! The lady at the cash did not bother to get off the phone while serving me….and made it a point NOT to meet my eyes. I am an Aspie – and rather aware of these things (as they are not ‘natural’ to me and I do not want to give offense – so I try WAY harder at them than most people – she had to work very hard indeed to avoid meeting my eyes). But, she made up for it in rude brusqueness, tossing my change onto the counter contemptuously and turning her back to me.
If this is how they treat their paying customers, no wonder this business is not seeing much traffic.
At least the water was nice!
As you see – people tried their best not to stand on the pavement.
Nick Vandergragt spoke well and pationately:
He pointed out how wonderful and tolerant a country we live in – even though this is a protest against Premier McGuinty and his policies, the young man sent from his office to monitor and record us was given the best, front-row spot and could record unmolested: and so it SHOULD be!
That is what our veterans like Bert fought for!
But, Mr. Vandergragt had a very important point: the problem with the McGuinty Government (or, as some people call it, the McGuilty Gang) and their ilk is not just the individual scandals – it is their whole mindset t hat is deeply flawed! And, put into practice, their ideas are destructive beyond imagination!
Perhaps you would like to ear the words of Bert, a 94-year-old veteran who tells it like it is (as recorded by VideoManOttawa):
The cops remained vigilant:
But the firefighters driving by gave us a thumbs up! (I do not use the term ‘firefighter’ because I am politically correct, but because to me ‘fireman’ will always be someone who burns books – blame Ray Bradbury!)
VideoManOttawa was there with his trusty video camera and he has posted the videos on YouTube. They are here, here, here, here, here,here, here,also here and here (including speeches by the municipal election candidates), here (Nick Vandergragt), here,here, and here.