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Ashley Hughes: Leaving vaccination orders and travel restrictions is embarrassing

Trudeau owes the Canadian people an explanation

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The prime minister, instead of fainting at international conferences, needs to answer questions at home, namely: why is the coalition government still imposing restrictive travel restrictions on its citizens?

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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had the opportunity to do the right thing last week, when the House voted against a proposal by Conservative MP Melissa Lantsman calling for a speedy reinstatement of pre-epidemic travel laws.

Instead he played divisive politics and the proposal was won in 202 to 117, Jagmeet Singh’s NDP provides the kind of support that was seen when Singh signed to keep this minority government in place until the next election.

Trudeau owes the Canadian people an explanation. He uses what has been a real public health problem – a threat that has diminished in recent months – to continue playing the politics of segregation. Leadership has nothing to do with following the voting of public opinion.

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There are no valid reasons for continuing to discriminate against an unvaccinated minority, or to exacerbate the chaos of the airport that disrupts the majority, who is vaccinated and who rightly wish to travel.

About 85 percent of eligible people in Canada are fully vaccinated, which is higher than vaccination rates in the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Australia and New Zealand – countries that have relaxed, or are about to reduce, travel restrictions. Unlike Canada, all of the above countries now allow their unprotected citizens to enter within and outside their borders.

With the exception of Australia and New Zealand, COVID has hit these countries harder than in Canada, where the death toll per million since April 26 was 1,023; in France, the number of deaths per million was 2,045; in the UK, 2,574; and US, 2,995. The Mexican rate was 2,513.

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So why the difference? Instead of showing the leadership one can expect from the prime minister, Trudeau leaves a heavy burden on his officials and cabinet ministers.

Following the parliamentary vote, Transport Minister Omar Alghabra was placed in a precarious position that his government was still consulting experts and other officials.

Which regions are likely to be? Certainly not the provinces, as they have all determined that the public health emergency that once justified segregation based on the immunization status has passed.

Trudeau and his government only need to watch the thousands of vaccinated and uncircumcised hockey fans who infiltrated the Saddledome and Rogers Place during the recent Alberta War to find out what the provincial governments think of these COVID measures.

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And he doesn’t have to consult with the British, who announced loud and clear around the world over the weekend how far they have come from COVID, by hosting an amazing four-day event to mark the Queen of the Platinum Jubilee Queen.

That it took so long for the Conservative Party of Canada to get its word out on this issue and ultimately take part in the fight against this government that has left it alone is an understatement.

Where was the voice of freedom that fought against the creation of a two-phase society last summer? This will ultimately be the questions the Conservatives will face as they elect a new leader in the coming months.

In the meantime, the Canadian people should be grateful that at last the opposition party seems ready to stand up and at least start asking questions of this government that should have been asked months ago. That is, what evidence is there that preventing uninvited Canadians from flying effectively works to reduce COVID-19 transmission?

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Even the Liberals do not believe in the policies of their government. “There is nothing wrong with re-examining tourism-related measures,” Liberal MP Nate Erskine-Smith wrote on Twitter about her decision not to vote for a Conservative proposal.

Let us remember that the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms was introduced by Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, the father of our current prime minister, to emphasize the rights of minorities. He feared that the majority would not be trusted to protect the rights of minorities – rights that he strongly defended. I bet he didn’t think it would be his son a few who needed such protection.

In Trudeau’s “justice community” of elders, “the state has no business in the national dormitories.” And it has no business in the private areas of the doctor’s office.

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It is now clear that continuing the imposition of these expired restrictions is nothing more than punishing injured egos in a truck drivers’ protest. Trudeau owes the Canadian people a full explanation of why government travel restrictions and vaccination orders are kept in the best possible condition before the day, or to do the right thing and allow Canadians to travel freely, regardless of the nature of the vaccine.

National Post

Ashley Hughes is a British-born freelancer living in Vancouver.

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Ashley Hughes: Leaving vaccination orders and travel restrictions is embarrassing

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