Peterborough’s “Great Barbershop Rebellion” quashed by the usual suspects

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In early April, we happened upon Alex Masters, the owner of Who’s Next Barbershop in Peterborough, Ont. Alex had decided that enough was enough in terms of the never-ending lockdown, so he opened his barbershop.

All he wants to do, after all, is be a provider for his young family and offer a service so many in his city are clamouring to embrace.

Indeed, the day we paid Alex our initial visit, we encountered a downright celebratory scene, as happy customers were lined up for haircuts and supporters rallied outside.

But much like Adam Skelly of Adamson Barbecue in Toronto, this act of workplace defiance did not go unnoticed by the authorities.

First came the tickets from Peterborough Public Health — one ticket for being open during the stay-at-home order, and another due to Alex saying he was going to continue to provide haircuts (the fines were $750 and $1,000).

Evidently, Peterborough Public Health believes that a barbershop — which adheres to the highest standards of hygiene and sanitation and only caters to a few people in the store at a time — is nevertheless a super-spreader environment… whereas big box stores and supermarkets continue to cram hundreds of people into their shops on a daily basis.

In fact, Peterborough Public Health issued a press release stating that it had served Masters a Section 22 order based on the following logic, courtesy of Dr. Rosana Salvaterra, Peterborough’s Medical Officer of Health (and someone, presumably, that hasn’t lost a single day’s worth of pay during the pandemic): “Personal service settings like hair salons and tattoo parlours are high risk for COVID-19 transmission because of the inability to maintain two meters distance.

In fact, there is currently an active outbreak linked to another local personal service setting that has resulted in eight cases so far.”

Yet, going by that logic, shouldn’t dentists be shut down, too? The “science” behind the Wuhan virus continues to fascinate us…

Days later in the wee hours of the morning, Peterborough Police — the same law enforcers who handed out tickets to People’s Party of Canada leader Maxime Bernier and MPP Randy Hillier for… giving a speech in a Peterborough park? — came by, not for haircuts but to assist in changing the locks of the barbershop.

The only thing missing was the mounted unit charging in…

Even so, the heavy-handed smackdown of Who’s Next Barbershop should come as no surprise given the recent public comments of Peterborough Mayor Diane Therrien, who likens anti-lockdown people to “clowns.”

Again, this slur coming from a woman who likely hasn’t missed a single paycheque during this pandemic.

However, we’re not going to let Alex Masters fight this battle on his own.

Alex is our latest Fight the Fines candidate, and you can help us help him by going to and making a donation.

Our thanks in advance.

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  • By Ezra Levant

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