Champions of democracy whether they be republicans (not the party), socialists, communists, or social democrats always claim that their idealized form of government is the opposite of fascism. When things are going well for democratic governments, they can appear quite different from fascism. However, when things go bad, democracies always revert to fascism.
A few weeks ago a bunch of Canadian truckers decided that they had had enough of their government’s COVID mandates. As a form of protest they drove to Ottawa and setup camp. What makes this protest different from recent popular occupational protests like the Occupy movement is that the protesters are working class instead of petty bourgeois. Because of that they’ve been labeled insurrectionists, racists, and worse instead of protesters (it turns out self-proclaimed champions of the working class tend to hate the actual working class). In spite of the labels foisted on the protesters, they have successfully embarrassed the Canadian government. The Canadian government’s reaction was predictable. It resorted to good old-fashioned fascism:
Under the extraordinary measures invoked by Mr. Trudeau, the police across the country will now be able to seize trucks and other vehicles being used in blockades. The measure will formally ban demonstrations that “go beyond lawful protest,” and the government can formally ban blockades in designated areas like border crossings, airports and the city of Ottawa.
Tow-truck operators, who have been reluctant to cooperate with the police, will also now be compelled to work with law enforcement agencies to clear Ottawa’s streets and the border crossings at Coutts, Alberta. If they don’t cooperate, they could face arrest.
The second paragraph is the most interesting. Most tow-truck operators who possess the equipment necessary to move semis rely on the good grace of truckers for their income. As a result they have refused the government’s request for towing services. In response the Canadian government is now putting a gun to their head and demanding obedience. This practice is commonly referred to as forced labor or slavery.
The Canadian government’s behavior isn’t unique amongst democracies. All democracies will toss aside their facade of respecting individuals when their power is challenged.