On Saturday, May 22, protesters once again gathered at Victoria Hall in Cobourg, Ontario to oppose government-mandated COVID-19 restrictions. Local police informed them that they could protest, as long as they abided by the same mandates that they are opposing.
The week prior, there was a Northumberland News article that quoted Cobourg police Chief Paul Vandegraaf stating that excess law enforcement has resulted in approximately $8,000 in overtime for Cobourg police each weekend.
In the same article, the chief relays the sad story that ordering members of his force to cover the protests each week has taken an “emotional toll” on his officers.
To make matters more bizarre in Cobourg — in the before times coined “Ontario’s Feel Good Town,” but now more reminiscent of a “Fenced Off Town” — town council voted 4-3 to completely fence off the Victoria Park Beach, for the second consecutive year.
Oddly, just two days before the Ford government lifted outdoor activity restrictions for the province.
Posing questions to protesters about their thoughts on the above news, I went into the small (but vocal) crowd to get local opinions on all things related to the pandemic, including the response from our different levels of government.
Just as I was leaving, a woman who had fled Communist Poland stopped for a chat and offered insight based on her own lived experience. She sees the playbook unfolding here and wants Canadians to heed her warning.