Rolling with the People's Convoy
After living under constant threat of termination due to being unvaxxed and watching the Canadian Trucker Protest with emotional awe (followed by horror), I felt compelled to join the People's Convoy. Since I haven't been terminated yet, I couldn't join the convoy long-term, but I was there for five days. I do not speak for any of the convoys, nor am I affiliated with any convoy organization. The purpose of this article is to share my experiences with those who joined in spirit and speak to those who feel that the convoy shouldn't exist.
At first glance, it seems that the convoy isn't needed anymore, right? Putin ended COVID-19! The agency where I work indicated that the science and data have undergone significant change! Apparently, the CDC has made up a new tool called "COVID-19 Community Levels," which will likely keep restrictions in place where mail-in-voting is necessary for Democrats to win in the midterms while loosening restrictions in other places for a while (since COVID wasn't polling well). A win-win!
I will admit thinking the convoy was too late and wishing it had happened when Canadians really needed us. However unfortunate, there is some tactical advantage to having learned valuable lessons from the Canadian experience. I will say that nearly every car and truck I saw (including my own) sported both U.S. and Canadian flags — meaning U.S. convoy participants feel much love and admiration for the Canadian protesters.
Author's convoy vehicle filling up with $4.19/gallon gas in Pennsylvania.
Nearly everyone I talked to felt that no matter how much Democrats and the media try to pretend COVID-19 is "over," it isn't...and Biden confirmed this by extending the national health emergency. The elimination of this "national emergency" is the core "ask" of the People's Convoy. Until it's gone, the restrictions and mandates are paused, not gone. The convoy is also protesting the government having had the power to put such restrictions and mandates on the people in the first place. Look no farther for a scary example of tyranny than to a recent Democrat proposal for a "Minister of Public Health Truth."
Even Bill Maher recognizes the government's fluid COVID truths. In his words, "How much wrong do you get to be while still holding the default setting for people who represent The Science?" I wonder if the Truth Minister will visit Kamala to inquire about her undermining public confidence in the vaccine by initially saying she wouldn't take it!
Concerns about growing government tyranny don't end with COVID mandates and restrictions, either — I know I am terrified of getting a knock at the door asking if I was in the convoy and why. I'm pretty sure I enjoyed a beer while being stared at by a few Feds dressed up like burly working guys in Ohio, but maybe the black helicopters following the convoy just made me paranoid! At the rally in Hagerstown, it sure seemed as though there were a lot of clean-shaven guys wearing clean tennis shoes scanning the crowd with cameras. On the other hand, I met a nice state trooper in Indiana who, when I asked him a question about the convoy, responded with, "This is a free country. It isn't Canada."
Other than fear, oppression, and ever-increasing gas prices, what was the convoy like? The first thing I can tell you is that I'm not sure how the mainstream media were able to ignore it. I heard that Illinois state troopers said the convoy was some 50 miles long. That's like ignoring a Category 5 hurricane hitting Florida!
The most stunning thing that words and pictures don't do justice to is the amazing support of people waving to the convoy from overpasses, rest areas, and the side of the road. In the 600 miles I drove with the convoy, I saw maybe five overpasses that didn't have people or flags on them. It was very cold and windy, yet these people and their children stayed out there for hours. It was an incredible reminder of how many people love this country and aren't afraid to show it. We deplorables needed this convoy.
There were many overpasses with commercial cranes on them flying U.S. flags from atop the boom. The cost to operate one of those vehicles is in the thousands per day, so it is no small sacrifice to have them sitting all day. There were some overpasses where farmers parked massive tractors adorned with flags. In at least one town we drove through, a fire department had a fire truck with the ladder extended at least 100 feet with a massive American flag flying from the top. There was a lot of honking!
There was a lot of humor, too. American sarcasm is unbeatable.
There were convoy cars and trucks of all kinds — from Prius to monster trucks. There were people of all kinds — young, old, women, men, handicapped, veterans, nurses, nobodies, all races and creeds (surely all white supremacists!). There were license plates from all over the country — California, Washington, Florida, Wisconsin, etc. (I'm sure the FBI can give us a list!) I talked to some in the convoy who had been vaccinated but don't want the boosters. I heard about friends and family harmed by the vaccine. One trucker I spoke with said his truck driver brother got the vaxx, and it affected his vision, so he can't drive a truck anymore. I met one woman who hasn't been able to see her grandkids due to family differences of opinion on vaccination — so she was taking her granddaughter's teddy bear across the country with the convoy, taking pictures of it along the way to share with her granddaughter...virtually...
I spoke to some who reminded me that they are losing thousands of dollars a day parking their trucks. This is most definitely a sacrifice. A sacrifice for what? A sacrifice to let our government know we aren't happy with how COVID was handled or the COVID tyranny, that there needs to be accountability for the mistakes, and that those who feel this way aren't just a "fringe minority."
Although I did happen to see a predominance of FJB flags, to be fair, I suppose I could have just missed a "Ridin' with Biden" section of the convoy. In any case, no one ever asked me what party I belonged to, nor, in my opinion, did anyone really care. While there was an assumption you didn't support our "president," there was no Minister of Party Affiliation to check your papers, and no KKK card was required to enter the rally.
The rally wasn't über-impressive, and one of the doctors who spoke was a bit annoying as he tried to channel his inner Trump with an ineffective (and not well received) chant of "lock them up" (referring to the COVID-19 officials). Once another politician stepped up to speak, I bailed. This wasn't what it was about anyway — it wasn't about a rally or free food. It isn't about Trump or Biden. It isn't about high gas prices or the midterm elections. It is about being willing to burn time, money, and rubber to stand up and say that all is not well and all is not forgiven.
This isn't over. Let's roll! Thank you to those standing firm in Hagerstown.
All images courtesy of the author.