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Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Caledonia Comes to Toronto

Which begs the question, when exactly will the police intervene to allow for the free flow of traffic?  The occupation on the Gardiner lasted only a few hours.  Had it lasted into the Monday morning rush hour it would have crippled traffic in the downtown core.  With the exception of the subway system, the Gardiner Expressway is the most vital piece of transportation infrastructure in Toronto.  The police were stunned by the move.  That's not because they're incompetent, it's because the idea of walking onto a major superhighway at dusk, even on a Sunday, is just a little too wacky.  A week ago last Sunday, a few hundred yards from the Tamil protesters, a group of South Vietnamese were staging a protest as well.  Didn't notice?  Well, heck no, that's because the Vietnamese, some were wearing old military uniforms from the war, were peacefully assembling at Nathan Phillips Square, the city's town square.  This is where most people protest.  It's right in front of City Hall, lots of room, disturbs no one.  As you may recall South Vietnam was conquered and enslaved by the Communist North in 1975.  The Reds are not known for their tenderness toward opposition.

The Tamil protesters, camped out in front of the US consulate for weeks, from time to time block University Avenue, a major thoroughfare.  Who is the law in Canada's largest city?  The provincial legislature stands at the top of University Avenue.  The MPPs can see what's happening a few blocks to the south.  Caledonia is now in year three.  The aboriginal occupiers in Caledonia have a plausible land claim, however appalling their tactics.  I wasn't aware that the Tamils had an ancient land claim on the pavement and asphalt of downtown Toronto.  Welcome to Canada.  Make yourselves feel at home, pretty much anywhere you'd like.  Other protesters do block traffic from time to time.  They don't make it a semi-daily event. 

Posted by Richard Anderson on May 12, 2009 | Permalink


Don't expect meaningful action from Pretty Boy McGuinty. No doubt his response to this will be to look for something to ban.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-05-12 7:09:36 AM

Pretty Boy? Your standards for male beauty are rather different from mine.

Posted by: Publius | 2009-05-12 7:22:15 AM

Harper did the right thing by ignoring them. After all, they openly waved the flag of the LTTE, a known terrorist organization with an appalling human rights record - i.e. use of child soldiers. Now that their side is losing, all of a sudden they want help. Too. Bad. Shame on Iggy and Taliban Jack for taking their side. So much for that "honest broker" nonsense. Of course, they are the same people who secretly supported the Iraq War while openly denouncing it. Shame.

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2009-05-12 7:26:44 AM


Are you sure it was the LTTE flag?

My sister, who lives in Toronto, claims the Tamil community there is being shaken down by the Tigers, who threaten violence against their businesses unless they provide protection money.

She claims the honest Tamil is afraid to go to the police.

At the same time, blocking traffic on the Gardiner at a time the Tigers are getting routed seems kinda counter-productive.

All I know if there was any sympathy for the Tiger cause, it's dwindling rapidly.

There were only three arrests. The cops should have fined everybody who had a child with them. That may have forced out some truth, if they are in fact being shaken down.

Posted by: set you free | 2009-05-12 7:50:43 AM

Get rid of them all. I am sick to death of everyone else's problems. Go home and protest there and don't let the plane door hit you on the way out.

Posted by: ray oule | 2009-05-12 8:02:34 AM

I don't care who it was. Trespassing and blocking traffic are offences. If these had been anti-abortion or gun-rights protestors they would have been hauled off within the hour, and the cops would have been right to do it. For all Miller's bombast and McGuinty's irrepressible social tinkering, between them they have all the fire and guts of a leghorn pullet.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-05-12 8:07:47 AM

The moment the situation gets out of hand, the government in question loses. It's guaranteed. Remember Dudley George. It doesn't matter if the police are in the right. If they hurt a civilian, the government is screwed. This is one of the few cases where I cannot blame the government for knowing how much force the public will tolerate. The public complains about the inconvenience now, but it's not enough for them to throw the government out at election time. But if the police started using force, the public (especially in a place like Toronto) would punish them severely.

Posted by: anonymous | 2009-05-12 8:54:58 AM


The flag they waved at their protests has the LTTE emblem on it. Not a good sign. It's disturbing that they would bring their war abroad, and worse that the Rich White People of Toronto (i.e. the Liberal/NDP/Green Party) would court their votes.

Since they are not white, it is not surprising that they would be afraid to go to Toronto's racist, all-white police "service" - more like a slave patrol. Why make the situation worse?

If there's any one thing that the Rich White People of Toronto can't stand, it is having their privileges obstructed by non-whites. Blocking the highways must have been the ultimate.

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2009-05-12 9:30:03 AM

Mike Harris's government did not fall over Dudley George, Anonymous. It fell because Mike Harris was one of those rare politicians who insisted on telling the voters the truth (at least as he saw it) rather than soothing them with comfortable lies. As history has proven time and again, the voters will not tolerate this kind of honesty. Not only does it make them feel insecure, but it disrupts the familiar pattern of voting in a liar and then complaining when he lies.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-05-12 9:39:32 AM

That just reinforces my point. How can I justify getting angry at the government of a city in which I do not reside for abiding the will of its citizens?

Posted by: anonymous | 2009-05-12 11:56:39 AM

How can I justify getting angry at the government of a city in which I do not reside for abiding the will of its citizens?

From a political standpoint, you can't. From a moral standpoint, you can. Tolerating this kind of behaviour invites more of it, which mean more lost productivity, more people late for work, or job interviews, or or their grandkids' birth, or whatever. Being a good leader is acting in the best interests of your followers, not rubber-stamping the whims of your followers.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-05-12 1:16:21 PM

I think it's wonderful timing. The Tories have been talking about reforming the immigration system to make sure people integrate better. Those ungrateful Lebanese "Canadian" refugees from a few years back have been largely forgotten - so a timely reminder from these Tamils helps. If only they had stayed on the highway all week.

Also it was informative to see how Ignatieff deals with a crisis situation.

Posted by: robert jago | 2009-05-12 2:05:57 PM

If the Tamils really wanted to get attention, why not burn the city of Tronna to the ground? If you do that, and I mean completely to the ground, then I'd be willing to hear what you have to say. (Whether I'd promise anything is unlikely).

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2009-05-12 2:08:42 PM

It's fucking public property in a country with the right to freedom of expression. What's the fucking problem?

If you don't like the disruption, privatize the roads. "But it's not politically feasible." So if something's not politically feasible we can ignore people's rights?

You are conservatives are all jackbooted communists at heart. "The public trains weren't running on time. How is the proletarian revolution going to succeed. Crush the disruption!"

Posted by: Robert Seymour | 2009-05-12 3:46:49 PM

Robert Seymour deserves to live in Toronto so he can have a front-row seat.

Canada gave up the traditional rule of law long ago along with its flag, the BNAA and English Common Law. We are now an international joke when it comes to allowing mob rule for anything and everything. We should not be surprised therefore to find mobs of foreign terrorists holding citizens hostage and dictating our foreign policy. First we allowed the Natives and the enviro-nuts to get away with it, then came the Islamists and now the Tamils. Oh, I almost forgot how the Sikh mobs managed to stop the deportation of an illegal more than once. By pretty much turning a blind eye to each, the governments and authorities have emboldened them and encouraged more of the same.

Posted by: Alain | 2009-05-12 4:46:40 PM

See what Trudeau hath wrought. May the name of the Devil himself reign in infamy for all time.

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2009-05-12 5:01:51 PM

ZP, I am no fan of Trudeau who basically destroyed Canada, however in this type of situation I wager he would invoke the War Measures Act or at least put a rapid end to this nonsense. He had zero tolerance for dissent and was not one to be intimidated by hooligans.

Posted by: Alain | 2009-05-12 7:49:02 PM

It's fucking public property in a country with the right to freedom of expression. What's the fucking problem?

The problem is that they were preventing the rest of the public from using it. Duh...

If you don't like the disruption, privatize the roads. "But it's not politically feasible." So if something's not politically feasible we can ignore people's rights?

People don't have the right to block traffic. Says so right in the books. The fact that property is public does not allow an angry mob to take it over and exclude everyone else.

You are conservatives are all jackbooted communists at heart. "The public trains weren't running on time. How is the proletarian revolution going to succeed. Crush the disruption!"

Spoken like a man who's never owned a plot of land in his life. You truly talk, think, and debate like an embittered loser, Robert.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-05-12 7:53:03 PM

Hey, Zeb! All those Afro-Canadian cops in the Toronto policing service must be really happy to be put on the same exalted level as their white brothers by another Afro brother. Good for you to point this out. Glad to see your shoulder chip is shrinking. Boko, baby.

Posted by: Agha Ali Arkahn | 2009-05-12 7:55:16 PM

Agha: they're window dressing. Toronto's slave patrol is designed to keep the non-whites in line. Who better to enforce that rule than non-whites, aka Uncle Toms.

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2009-05-12 8:29:21 PM

Hey TORONTO: I was born and raised here just like my father. our government classifies the Tamils as Terrorists . There is 300,000 of them .100,000 for tomorrow .Stay home and safe.

Posted by: Ron | 2009-05-12 8:54:03 PM

Ah David Miller's Toronto - love what they've done to the place, make it a mockery of governance and an international embarrassment. When will people learn that only Rich White People matter there?

Here's to the brave soldiers of the Sri Lanka Army, Navy and Air Force in their struggle to defeat the LTTE Terrorists and bring peace to their island nation!

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2009-05-12 9:46:11 PM

As a resident of Caledonia I truly understand the frustrations and concerns you must be feeling right now. I wish after three years of occupation to a survey next to mine some encouraging words of support.

Sadly I have None!

Our Provincial Government has no spine. But in saying that the larger population centers have the voting power to force governments through polling and public opinion, making government follow the one rule this country must stand on and that is ONE LAW FOR ALL.

Thank You and good luck T.O

Posted by: Livin in the Zone | 2009-05-12 10:23:26 PM

I notice very little comment from the "libertarian" crowd who champion unrestricted immigration. Most of these groups have little or no regard for Canada or its values. Canada just happens to be a convenient and safe place to fund / continue their wars back home.

Posted by: The Stig | 2009-05-13 9:20:11 AM

Stig, you raise an interesting point. I had not paid attention to it but now that you raise it; well, interesting...

Posted by: Alain | 2009-05-13 11:07:34 AM

I once was stuck for hours on the Gardiner expressway because of a marathon which closed off exit ramps. It wasn't OK then, either.

Posted by: Agha Ali Arkahn | 2009-05-14 10:27:10 AM

I am from Six Nations and feel your fustrations as quoted one law for all as we have been waiting 200 years for some justice on Ontario and Canada who both continue to destroy the Grand river water shed.. Building towns and cities with outdated septic systems. As we wait for 150 years of occupation on the plank road... as our chiefs said 150 years ago no is no to any land sales..And stop bothering the hobos of our communities to sign illegal documents...

Posted by: Nations | 2009-06-02 9:41:46 AM

Nations: did you really expect the Rich White People of Toronto to care about you, or indeed anyone but themselves? I recommend that you keep fighting to the bitter end and never negotiate with those racists.

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2009-06-02 10:31:29 AM

One law for you and another for the rest of us does not quality as one law for all, Nations. If you don't pay tax, why should you receive tax subsidy? Why should you get for free what everything else has to pay for, on the strength of a one-eighths-by-blood law straight out of the Jim Crow South?

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-06-02 10:35:45 AM

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