News of the Canadian Trucker Convoy has spread across the United States like wildfire, and it has added to the divided country. Republicans like Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R) have voiced their support of the convoy, selling shirts sporting “Truck Yeah” in the front.
In contrast, a number of lawmakers have voiced their disapproval, and leading the charge against them is Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. However, Florida Rep. Brian Mast (R) has taken to social media to lend his support, arguing that Americans should “not take freedom for granted” in light of the tension between the "Freedom Convoy" and the Canadian government.
Whether it’s New York or Toronto, we must not take freedom for granted. pic.twitter.com/ZeKSU4YeHf
— Rep. Brian Mast (@RepBrianMast) February 20, 2022
With reports that those helping the convoy would receive criminal charges, GOP lawmakers have amped up their support for the truckers. Mast, in a video, expressed that “the Freedom Convoy is made up of hardworking men and women just trying to take care of their families.” Moreover, “they’re truckers; they’re not terrorists.”
Prime Minister Trudeau has called the truckers a “fringe minority,” and he invoked the Emergencies Act against them, saying that “it is no longer a lawful protest against federal government policy. It is now an illegal occupation.” In response, Trudeau affirmed that “it is time for people to go home.”
For lawmakers like Mast, the Freedom convoy is only opposing "the vaccine mandates that threaten their livelihoods." Because of this, Mast criticized "the Canadian Government and 'woke' corporations" for "using laws and regulations intended to prevent terror attacks in order to shut down the Freedom Convoy."
Initially, in January, the convoy intended on meeting with Prime Minister Trudeau over the vaccine mandates, but the Prime Minister soon after announced that he had tested positive for COVID-19. This was seen as a political tactic to avoid meeting with the convoy, and lawmakers directed criticism at Trudeau after his announcement.