Report: Trudeau's Use of Emergency Powers was Justified

    Report: Trudeau's Use of Emergency Powers was Justified
    Last updated Feb 20, 2023
    Image credit: nytimes


    • Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's use of the Emergencies Act in February 2022 — to disperse the so-called "Freedom Convoy" movement — was justified according to a report published Friday by Canada's Public Order Emergency Commission (POEC).
    • The report was submitted to the House of Commons by Justice Paul Rouleau. The release concluded six weeks of public hearings that probed the federal government's unprecedented invocation of emergency powers to end protests occupying downtown Ottawa and blocking Canada-US border crossings.
    • The 2,000-page document concluded that most of the Cabinet's emergency measures were appropriate and effective in helping return order to the country and preventing any casualties.
    • While concurring that Canadians had a right to lawfully protest against alleged government overreach in response to the COVID pandemic, Rouleau asserted that the situation in Ottawa became "unsafe and chaotic" as a result of demonstrations.
    • However, he also pointed out that it was "regrettable" that such extreme action had to be applied as it stemmed from a likely avoidable situation, citing a collapse in policing and coordination failures across various levels of government.
    • In addition to its findings about Trudeau's actions, the POEC made 56 recommendations to improve intelligence sharing, police response to large-scale protests, and the Emergencies Act itself, after hearing from over 70 witnesses and 50 experts late last year about the response to Freedom Convoy demonstrations.


    Pro-establishment narrative

    The radical far-right mob called themselves the "Freedom Convoy" to disguise their true colors. The anti-vax trucker movement was made up of dangerous conspiracy theorists that posed a clear threat to Canadians' safety during an already-dangerous pandemic. The response of government and police was completely justified during a time of an unprecedented uprising.

    Establishment-critical narrative

    Trudeau was warned by his own intelligence agency that invoking the Emergencies Act would only escalate anti-government sentiment and potentially even prompt violence. While protesters were exercising their right to oppose extraordinary public health mandates, the government decided to enact an assault on civil liberties. Labeling all protesters far-right conspiracy theorists is a deliberate distortion of the truth aimed at justifying this authoritarian crackdown.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 60% chance that the Liberal Party will win the most seats in the next Canadian federal election, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

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