US convoy making its way to DC
United States truckers by the thousands are traveling in convoys from all across to nation towards Washington, D.C. They are joined by private vehicles, motorcycles and campers. Citizens are lining overpasses, and gathering along the route to wave flags and banners and are competing with each other as they provide meals and donations to the convoys. The convoys are asking for an end to all COVID mandates and the emergency executive orders.
Mandy Farnham of Missouri said her young son was excited about the convoy. “I honestly had no idea what I was getting myself into. But every time I saw a post or article about the Canadian convoy, I got goosebumps and knew I had to do something. Seeing Coyer’s excitement and curiosity gave us the idea to join for the day. If we didn’t have the farm, I would have loved to take the whole family,” she said.
Farnham and her 9-year-old son drove to Oklahoma so they could travel with the convoy for a day. “When we got to Vinita for the night, we couldn’t believe the turnout of people. The sidewalks were packed because the convoy was going to do a drive through town that evening. Our hotel was filled with people that were joining. We met a family from Montana that drove all night to join it. They had four kids under the age of 6. They had to do something to support these guys they told me.”
Farnham said she met people from Arizona, Texas, Idaho, Washington, California and from all over the west. Farnham and her son decorated their suburban before joining the convoy and he wrote on his side “For America.”
“The amount of vehicles at Big Cabin (the starting point for the day) was insane. Vehicles of all kinds were everywhere. Big rigs, campers, motorcycles, trucks, SUV’s, minivans and cars. Everyone was smiling and excited. Food was being handed out to everyone so we had something to snack on. The amount of food donations had been overwhelming,” she said. “It took us over 30 minutes for everyone to get out of the parking lot to get on the road. First major highlight, we got to blow through the tollbooth. The convoy paid for everyone who went through. Even the non-convoy drivers because they had the whole place shut down. The workers were all outside cheering us on.”
Farnham said the turnout on the overpasses was incredible. “I wish we counted how many we went under. It seemed like 100, I believe only five didn’t have someone on them. All along the interstate, there were people everywhere. Overpasses filled with people, exit ramps lined, farmers in their fields, people watching from the outer roads. Hundreds of people. Drivers were coming over the CB saying they had blown a fuse from honking so much. I saw hope and patriotism and everyone so glad that someone is standing up.”
She said the traffic was terrible and they even saw two bumper crashes because traffic stopped so fast and that tailgating was horrible. “The Oklahoma Highway Patrol is amazing and the Missouri State Highway Patrol was incredible too. There was no way they could have prepared themselves for what all was coming. The did an incredible job keeping everyone safe. With all the support we saw, we heard a little bit of non-support on the CB. We heard a couple people on the radio who didn’t support this at all, some were truck drivers too.”
Farnham said the convoy slow-rolled all day and never going over 40 mph, so it made for a long day on the road. “Rolling into Cuba, made the whole thing worth it. We had to wait on the shoulder of the road because so many were exiting on the ramp. The truck stop was beyond packed. The streets were filled with cars and people. Food was everywhere and music playing. It was like a big family reunion.”
The convoys are committed to peacefully remaining outside of D.C. proper but the mayor and police have already called for more law enforcement support.
State and local law enforcement have called in support from the National Guard In anticipation of the massive convoy in the D.C. area between late February and late March, a government source told Fox News on, Feb. 22. National guard troops will reportedly deploy beginning Tuesday and remain in place until the end of March. (DC prepares for possible US ‘Freedom Convoy,’ officials request National Guard troops, by Stephen Sorace, 2/22/22.)
Members of Congress and the senate along with over 15 governors have spoken out against the mandates and urged the administration to reconsider.
“The Biden Administration’s mandates have done more harm than good. I’m thankful for the role vaccines have played in returning to normal, but the administration’s heavy-handed approach has added to our nation’s workforce challenges and exacerbated the supply chain crisis. I have co-sponsored legislation to stop these mandates, and I was pleased to see the Supreme Court agree they are an overreach. As employers struggle to fill the jobs necessary to make, transport, and sell goods, we need to be boosting supply chain operations, not worsening the situation with red tape which creates forced layoffs and shortages of the essential workers who have kept our country afloat throughout the pandemic, like truck drivers and health care workers,” said Nebraska Congressmen Adrian Smith.
“Sen. (Jon) Tester (D-Mont.) has urged the Department of Homeland Security to halt its vaccine requirement for truckers and work with Canadian officials to coordinate regulations to provide stability for Montana producers and to protect trade and essential travel across the northern border,” according to a Tester statement.
CNBC reported in February that the Canadian convoys and protests, which inspired the American convoys, were costing Americans money by increasing the cost of goods.
“The blockades have already inflicted significant economic damage on both the U.S. and Canada, weakening supply chains already hurt by the pandemic. Traffic on the Ambassador Bridge, for example, accounts for a quarter of all cross-border trade between the U.S. and Canada — with $360 million in trade per day,” said CNBC reporter Mike Winters in a Feb. 17, story.
Ford, General Motors and Toyota manufacturing plants did shut down or delay production in February, which could exacerbate inflationary costs, reported Winters.
“The prices for other large U.S. imports from Canada like snack foods, red meats, vegetable oils, processed fruit and fresh vegetables could be impacted, as well,” reported Winters.
Alberta, Canada, businessman, cattle producer and cutting horse raiser, Rocky Davis took his pickup and horse trailer to Ottawa with the convoy. “It was a life changing experience driving through all the provinces. Every single crossroad had people standing there in minus 25 degrees (Celsius) waving flags. The desperation and frustration, they were begging for help. Rural Alberta and Saskatchewan have been hit hard. The media has you convinced that you are the only one but they have you fooled. Just knowing now that there are millions more who think like you do. In my small town of 2,500 people there were 10 of us in Ottawa,” he said.
Davis said that he feels they brought unity and hope to Canada. “I flew my flags all the way going home, people honked and waved. We are almost like a militia now waiting to be called.”
The convoys are giving hope to people who have become disenchanted with elected officials and the disconnect of the Washington, D.C., policies to average Americans, Farnham said. The patriotism all across the nation is heartwarming and “Like the Fourth of July only better.”
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