truck drivers form an anti-health restrictions “convoy” to Washington

truck drivers form an anti health restrictions convoy to Washington

A few hundred truck drivers and demonstrators opposed to the health measures implemented against Covid-19 in the United States gathered on Wednesday morning in southern California to form a “convoy” towards the American capital, 4,200 km from the.

The organizers of this “people’s convoy”, supported by many conservative anti-vaccine and anti-mask organizations, planned to arrive on the outskirts of the capital Washington on March 5 for a show of force.

“It’s time to reopen the country”, they proclaim on their website, where the amount of donations received reached Wednesday morning more than 460,000 dollars according to these emulators of Canadian demonstrators who, after a similar convoy, blocked the capital Ottawa for more than three weeks.

“It is time for elected officials to work together with American workers to restore freedom”, adds the manifesto, which calls in particular for “the end of the national state of emergency” decreed by the government to fight against the Covid-19 and “the restoration of the Constitution”, according to them flouted by health measures.

This slogan drew some 200 vehicles to the parking lot of a stadium in Adelanto, a small town in southern California, most of them adorned with American flags, banners proclaiming “freedom”. It is from here that the convoy to Washington must leave.

Shane Class, 48, an inveterate supporter of former President Donald Trump, has already traveled 1,300 km to come with his wife from Idaho (northwest) and intends to drive to the capital to demonstrate “peacefully”.


Anti-Covid-19 restrictions protesters gather in Adelanto, California on February 23, 2022, wishing to converge on Washington
© AFP – Patrick T. FALLON

Proudly sporting a cap bearing the image of Donald Trump and carrying suitcases stamped with the stars and stripes, he believes that “our government must begin to understand that the people want to regain the freedom provided for in the Constitution”.

“I think we are all here for a different reason but it comes down to the same thing: freedom,” he insists.

Brian Brase, one of the truckers at the head of the convoy, wants “a return to normal”. “We are challenging the emergency measures that have been implemented and we want an end to all mask-wearing and (mandatory) vaccination orders for federal employees and caregivers,” he said.

The refusal of vaccines against Covid-19 and the wearing of masks have become a fault line within American society, even a marker of political affiliation.

Several Republican governors have thus invoked the protection of individual freedoms to introduce bans on the obligation to wear a mask in their states.

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