Tuesday, April 16, 2024
On the Road with Mike MurchisonOpinion/ColumnTrucking

Wrap your hands around a steering wheel, or a copy of the Canadian constitution: the choice is yours

Photo: Stranded” by Mike Murchison

Update November 13, 2022: As the Public Order Emergency Commission enters its final phase, RWN obtained Mike Murchison’s permission to reprint his column from January 23, 2022. It gives a Trucker’s impression of being segregated during COVID before shots became available.


Let me share with you my world out on the white line for the last two years.

I have heard the term “segregation” my whole life; I never fully identified with it until I was refused use of washrooms in truck stops in Northern Ontario, or made to stand out in the cold at a drive-through window at a fast-food joint. Standing in the drive-through lane with cars, I felt very out of place. Segregated.

For a while, certain places wouldn’t handle my cash because I travel for a living. Restaurants closed, or downsized to “take-out only” service. I was eating out of paper bags while working and sleeping for days on the road: in the summer heat, and frigid cold of winter.

I watched the price of gasoline and groceries skyrocket, along with everything else.

I watched as a confident, strong, compassionate country of people got broken down and re-shaped into a tired, worried, insecure mass yearning for all this to be over.

Canadians looked to their leaders for direction and guidance, only to find that not a one of them knows what the hell they’re doing. There’s nothing in the playbook except to pile on more taxes, restrictions and repetitive cries of alarm and fear.

Oh yes, I know the virus and its offspring are real. The benefits and the risks of the shot are real, too.

I’ve heard the blame game and the conspiracy theories. What I see is that families are too busy trying to live and love, just to get by day-to-day with what is left of what used to be considered “normal.” What I want to know is, when will it all end?

Some people got the shot; policy makers remind us that it’s in the interest of public safety to get the shots.

Some didn’t. Why not? Well, there is a document entitled “The Charter of Rights & Freedoms;” read it sometime 

  I’ve seen a lot in the last two years. Now, the very backbone of the country’s supply chain network, the trucking industry, has been given a boot right in the teeth: mandatory proof of vaccination.

Photo: “Barbed wire” by Mike Murchison

 This, after we were such good “essential workers” for so long?

There were never any awards given out to “essential workers.” There didn’t have to be: they were just thousands of people showing up to do a job under difficult circumstances.

Now, the message seems to be “If you get vaxxed, you get to work. If you haven’t had the shots, you’ll get looked down on.” The government and border agencies couldn’t care less that you just spent the last two years busting your butt out on the road to keep the store shelves filled.

This is another unthought-out policy change by a government that is throwing things at the wall to see what sticks.

Without the proof of vaccination, a Driver risks getting quarantined. I get it. I hope the reader gets what that means to their grocery bill and anything else they plan on purchasing.

 I can’t tell you what to do. Only you can make your own decision regarding the vaccine. But what I can see is this: it is coming down to a decision between whether or not you want to wrap your hands around the steering wheel and continue trucking across the border to America, or wrapping them around a copy of the Charter of Rights & Freedoms in Canada.

Enough said.