The disease destroying Canada right now is liberalism in general – and Trudeau in particular. The despicable treatment of the freedom convoy there by various leaders tells us all we need to know about liberalism – it is not only a mental illness, but it is a kissing cousin of fascism.
When you have heavily armed militia with fingers on the triggers of their assault weapons staring down toddlers playing on jumping castles, you know we are seeing the end of democracy and the rise of full-tilt tyranny. When governments can freeze the bank accounts of peaceful freedom marchers, you know we are seeing the end of democracy and the rise of full-tilt tyranny.
When the state can take pets away from the protesters and have them destroyed, you know we are seeing the end of democracy and the rise of full-tilt tyranny. When you have leaders calling lovers of liberty a fringe minority of terrorists and white racists, you know we are seeing the end of democracy and the rise of full-tilt tyranny.
When police use pepper spray, horses and clubs against unarmed protesters, you know we are seeing the end of democracy and the rise of full-tilt tyranny. When you have Trudeau telling the convoy that they are interrupting people’s normal lives and stopping everyday business, when he has been doing exactly that to the Canadians for the past two years, you know we are seeing the end of democracy and the rise of full-tilt tyranny.
When you have the government preventing MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell from bringing in pillows to the truckers, you know we are seeing the end of democracy and the rise of full-tilt tyranny. When you have people being forced out of their jobs because of Statist dictates, you know we are seeing the end of democracy and the rise of full-tilt tyranny.
Or to paraphrase one social media post, when ‘we have the names of the people who contributed to the trucker’s convoy, but not the names of Ghislaine Maxwell’s customers,’ you know we are seeing the end of democracy and the rise of full-tilt tyranny.
Never in my long life have I seen Western democracies so rapidly and so decisively descend into the stuff of dystopian novels. This is utterly shocking to behold. It is as if we never had Germany in the 30s and 40s to learn any lessons from. It is as if the past two years have appeared in a vacuum, with nothing in the past to give us any hints as to what might happen, and how we might proceed.
Yesterday I penned a piece by two commentators asking why the churches have been so silent on this plunge into dictatorship. Today I want to feature two more articles that also raise some very important points. Owen Strachan has said this:
Before there were the Canadian truckers, there were the Canadian pastors.
In case the preceding sentence is strange to you, here’s what has been happening in Canada lately. Truckers from across the nation streamed into Ottawa a week or two ago. They did so in order to peacefully protest the loss of liberties. Under the guise of COVID policy, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has altered the very nature of citizenship in Canada. Vaccine mandates, forced closure of all manner of institutions, and vaccine passports have meant that Canadians have suffered tremendously as they watched their freedoms dwindle. In the name of fighting a (real) virus, a once-great nation has fallen to its knees.
But it has not stayed there. The truckers have fought back. They have shown that the light of the West — freedom for the individual — has not gone out. Putting their livelihoods on the line, the truckers have acted as men must in the face of massive civilizational threat: boldly. They have not torched Ottawa or anywhere else. They have not caused violence and mayhem. Unlike the riots of the summer of 2020 — riots fomented by Black Lives Matter, Antifa, and the mainstream media’s coverage, the winter of 2022 has featured protest of a peaceful kind. The truckers have given the world an example of how to advocate for liberty and defy tyranny — tyranny of a distinctly Trudeauian kind.
Call it “champagne tyranny,” for although Canada’s foremost political leader projects a cosmopolitan air, if you look beneath the half-smile and the flowing locks, you see an emerging totalitarian. The truckers have defied “champagne tyranny.” They were not the first to do so in Canada, however. Starting in the summer of 2020, Ontario pastor Jacob Reaume saw that he could not fail to gather his people for congregational worship. The flock of Trinity Bible Chapel in Waterloo needed the Word and the gospel. Sermonettes on Zoom and text messages to one another would not cut it. Reaume’s conscience told him that remotely gathering over Zoom was no substitute for the gathered church (Hebrews 10:25). Reaume knew instinctively what John MacArthur has proclaimed: “There is no such thing as a Zoom church.”
Men like Mike Hovland, Steve Richardson, Aaron Rock, Joseph Boot, Samuel Sey, and Steve Bainbridge have put themselves on record as those who will not bow the knee to champagne tyranny. Still others, like Artur Pawlowski — a Protestant of a different religious stripe than the aforementioned men — have also paid a heavy price for defending religious liberty.
Yet here is something remarkable: the American church has been largely silent about the plight of the Canadian church. Rarely has so much communicative power gone so untapped. Very few pastors, theologians, and religious leaders have supported the persecuted and suffering Canadian church. In America, blessed with huge organizations devoted to the cause of religious liberty and freedom more generally, precious few have spoken in defense of the faithful leaders and congregations of Canada. In fact, over the last couple of years, when Americans (and some Canadians) have spoken up at all about the suffering Canadian pastors, they have done so to oppose them, nitpick their arguments, and generally discourage their bravery.
There is a great more to say about all this. Yet what we should not miss is this: courage is having an effect in Canada, a tremendous effect. It always does. Courage is how movements advance; freedom is what comes from the gospel of Christ, freedom of many kinds. God has done something unprecedented in Canada in recent days, and a nation falling under the shadow of tyranny has awoken. The truckers show us this, as does the massive cross-country opposition to Trudeau’s champagne tyranny.
Truly, at this hour, Trudeau is alone. He is not bolstered by a wave of popular opinion. He who has done so much to mask and muzzle the Canadian people is well and truly unmasked. In his common grace, God has let the world see — in Canada and across the world — the totalitarian nature of modern leftism. It is not “live and let live” as an ideology; it is “do what I say or suffer.”
Here is the story on the ground, then. Canada is not fallen — not yet. Amidst much travail and real suffering, the true Canada is rising. Long may it rise. We ask not for violence or destruction but a return to liberty, human flourishing, and justice. If it is brave truckers who have lately led the way here, know this: before there were the Canadian truckers, there were the Canadian pastors. Man may oppose them, but God is behind them. What is the emblem of the Christian faith, after all? Light has come into the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it (John 1:5). And, we may rightly say, it never will.
And then this Daily Wire piece discusses some brave Canadian church leaders who are speaking against all this champagne tyranny:
A coalition of Canadian church leaders hammered Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in an open letter earlier this week over his treatment of the Freedom Convoy protesters and handling of COVID-19. Liberty Coalition Canada (LCC), an activist Christian group covering “the breakdown of liberty in Canada” put out an open letter to Trudeau urging the prime minister to drop COVID-19 vaccine mandates and “restore the constitutional freedoms of the people.”
Here is part of that letter:
As such, we as Christian pastors condemn in the strongest possible terms your unprecedented invoking of the Emergency Powers Act (1988) with the intent of bringing unaccountable state power to bear on peaceful citizens – “men women and children” – who have been stripped of their fundamental freedoms for two years and who have in many cases lost everything as a result of your government’s mandates. There is no national emergency and to invoke one to crush peaceful political dissent is a totalitarian act of repression displaying weakness not strength. These tyrannical actions are exposing this government and people to the judgment of God, and we are deeply concerned that you do not appreciate the significance of God’s wrath upon a rebellious and lawless nation.
The American satirist and libertarian commentator P. J. O’Rourke, who passed away this week, once put it this way: “At the core of liberalism is the spoiled child — miserable, as all spoiled children are, unsatisfied, demanding, ill-disciplined, despotic and useless. Liberalism is a philosophy of snivelling brats.” One can’t help but think that he presciently had Trudeau and Co. in mind.