Canadian journalist Donna Laframboise. Former National Post & Toronto Star columnist, past vice president of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association.
How long will non-violent protester Tamara Lich be kept behind bars? UPDATED HERE (click)
convoy organizer Tamara Lich is arrested in the above video, which was posted on Twitter HERE
Tamara Lich was arrested Thursday evening, February 17th, for the crime of being a freedom convoy organizer. As you can see from the 90-second video above, she did not resist arrest. She was calm and dignified.
It’s not clear why the arrest wasn’t made by female officers in a city overflowing with extra police personnel. Look at the size of Tamara, compared to the two male officers who came for her.
Tamara isn’t accused of violence of any kind. She’s been charged with “counselling to commit mischief.” She reportedly has no criminal record. Yet she has already spent three nights in police custody.
A bail hearing was held yesterday. Rather than ordering her immediate release, the judge chose to reserve judgment until Tuesday (tomorrow is Family Day, a holiday here in Canada). Which means Lich will spend a minimum of five nights behind bars.
Bank accounts belonging to Lich and her family have been frozen by a Canadian government that’s going rogue in front of our very eyes.
If you stab someone, steal a car, or rob a convenience store at gunpoint in this country, the government doesn’t freeze your bank account. You must be brought to trial. Only after that happens, only after you’ve been convicted, can you be fined. The state doesn’t freeze your financial assets from the get go, making it impossible for you to pay your heating bill in the middle of a Canadian winter.
Presumption of innocence, anyone?
When the truckers arrived in Ottawa three weeks ago, they called attention to the fact that a core human right – bodily autonomy – was being violated by Canada’s COVID-19 vaccine mandates.
Since then, we’ve learned that another core human right – to peacefully protest government policies – no longer applies in Canada. Protest too effectively, for too long, in the wrong place, and you get arrested.
You will then be incarcerated, as Tamara currently is, even if your behaviour has been supremely non-violent.
Letter from Birmingham Jail, Martin Luther King Jr., 1963
You may well ask: “Why direct action? Why sit ins, marches and so forth? Isn’t negotiation a better path?” You are quite right in calling for negotiation. Indeed, this is the very purpose of direct action. Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and foster such a tension that a community which has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue. It seeks so to dramatize the issue that it can no longer be ignored…We know through painful experience that freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed…There comes a time when the cup of endurance runs over, and men are no longer willing to be plunged into the abyss of despair.
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