They’ve decided to repeatedly avoid the issue of obesity, and take measures that will make people even less healthy.
Recently, Alberta Premier Jason Kenney said restrictions weren’t working.
But, as with nearly every politician in the past year, what he said one day was simply worthless, having zero correlation with what would be said or done down the road.
And yet, as unpredictable as the words are, the actions have been sadly predictable: Foolish, incoherent lockdowns that restrict freedoms while failing to actually protect the most vulnerable.
Consider what Kenney Tweeted following his announcement of new draconian restrictions:
“Last night during a Facebook live event with Albertans I was asked about fitness, gyms and personal wellness. When speaking about an outdoor fitness class I recently walked by, I answered in error that outdoor fitness classes are still allowed.”
Last night during a Facebook live event with Albertans I was asked about fitness, gyms and personal wellness. When speaking about an outdoor fitness class I recently walked by, I answered in error that outdoor fitness classes are still allowed.
— Jason Kenney (@jkenney) May 5, 2021
“Effective May 9 in regions under the new restrictions sports, performance and outdoor recreation are limited to household members or if living alone, two close contacts. Unfortunately, outdoor fitness classes are not permitted under the newly-announced restrictions.”
Effective May 9 in regions under the new restrictions sports, performance and outdoor recreation are limited to household members or if living alone, two close contacts. Unfortunately, outdoor fitness classes are not permitted under the newly-announced restrictions.
— Jason Kenney (@jkenney) May 5, 2021
“Find out more at https://alberta.ca/enhanced-public-health-measures.aspx”
Find out more at https://t.co/kGlKWAwob5
— Jason Kenney (@jkenney) May 5, 2021
As Jean Pierre pointed out on Twitter, this is the height of absurdity:
“So I can gather and get drunk with 5 people outdoors but I can’t do a few pushups and lunges outdoors with a few friends in a safe and socially distance manner?… Will Govt of Alberta’s start offering risk management courses?… Nobel Prize worthy.”
So I can gather and get drunk with 5 people outdoors but I can’t do a few pushups and lunges outdoors with a few friends in a safe and socially distance manner?… Will Govt of Alberta’s start offering risk management courses?… Nobel Prize worthy. @CMOH_Alberta @RachelNotley
— Jean Pierre (@jeanpsubasic) May 5, 2021
Kenney isn’t alone in this immense stupidity, with governments across the country continuing to discourage outdoor fitness activity – despite the rarity of outdoor virus transmission – and despite the fact that the number one thing people should be doing is getting more exercise, since the more weight people lose, and the fitter they become, the less vulnerable they will be to a virus that has negative outcomes heavily correlated with obesity.
While obesity is the second-biggest risk fact after age, it is of course the only one that can be controlled.
The strategy should have been to put the vast majority of effort and resources to protecting seniors care homes, while encouraging people to get outside, move around, lift weights, eat healthy, and lower stress.
Instead, everything the government did was focused on broad-based draconian lockdowns, leaving the most vulnerable without the necessary protection, while severely restricting freedoms, avoiding the issue of obesity, deepening the mental health crisis, and devastating the economy.
Canada is increasingly an authoritarian outlier
If you’ve been looking around the world, seeing places like Texas and Florida open up and go mostly back to normal without a huge disaster, and thinking “Canada seems more locked down that most places,” that’s because we are indeed increasingly and authoritarian outlier, as reported by True North:
“Canada’s current lockdown measures are some of the most stringent in the world rivalling authoritarian communist states like China and Cuba, Oxford University’s COVID-19 Government Response Tracker (OxCGRT) suggests.
Included in the tracker is a COVID-19 stringency index which measures the strictness of government protocols meant to handle the pandemic.
The score is based on nine variables including school closures, travel bans and other public health measures. Each country is given a value from 0 to 100 by the index, with the score of 100 indicating the strictest policies.”
“As of May 3, 2021 Canada had a stringency score of 75.46 which is driven by school and workplace closures, gathering restrictions, stay at home orders and other measures.
In comparison, the severity of China’s lockdown measures only surpasses Canada’s by a few points, with the communist state having a stringency score of 78.24.”
And people are noticing:
“Joe Rogan comments on lockdowns in Canada: “Canada is f**ked right now…they are so locked down, and I don’t understand why they think that’s good, I don’t understand why they think that’s the solution.””
Joe Rogan comments on lockdowns in Canada: “Canada is f**ked right now…they are so locked down, and I don’t understand why they think that’s good, I don’t understand why they think that’s the solution.” pic.twitter.com/JKABt5BOmD
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) May 6, 2021
People chose fear and control over personal responsibility
The unfortunate thing is that it isn’t just politicians pushing Canada in this direction.
Many people are demanding it.
We see people desperate for ever-more lockdowns, lusting after punishments of ‘violators,’ and demonizing anyone who pushes back.
A significant portion of the Canadian population have decided that politicians should tell us what to do, and that – rather than take responsibility for their own health and fitness – we should make others responsible for our own level of risk.
After all, if you don’t want to attend church, if you don’t want to go to a gym, if you don’t want to exercise with people outside, you don’t have to. But why should your level of risk determine the level of risk someone else choses to take?
Also, why are we taking advice from many politicians who look as if the idea of attending a fitness class never once crossed their minds?
Fear vs Freedom
Seeing a politician like Jason Kenney – ostensibly a ‘conservative’ – reverse himself repeatedly and bring in such draconian and incoherent restrictions shows that in Canada, the battle between fear and freedom has been decisively won by fear.
And it’s not even close.
The idea of personal responsibility, and the role we have in our own physical fitness and resilience, has been completely abandoned by most politicians and millions of Canadians, and in the place of responsibility we have restriction and government power.
We have gone from questioning our politicians, to now demanding they restrict us more and more and more, all for our own ‘safety.’
That betrays a further weakening of the Canadian mindset, a mindset that already appears unequipped to deal with the difficult realities of this world and seeks to retreat into the ‘safety’ that comes with making others responsible for our own lives.
Last bastion of individual responsibility & freedom under assault
If there was any part of the country that you would have expected to eschew draconian lockdowns, it would have been Alberta, particularly Alberta led by a ‘conservative’ government.
And yet, we have repeatedly seen politicians of all stripes in this country embrace lockdowns, even as other parts of the world have either no lockdowns, or lockdowns that are far less strict.
Thus, what would seem to have been the ‘last bastion’ of individual responsibility & freedom is under assault.
The reality is that regardless of region or party label, the defence of individual responsibility comes down to how much of the population embraces those ideals, and in Canada, that number has clearly dwindled.
Our political class resembles much of our country: Fearful, demanding control, and unwilling to take responsibility.
Photo – YouTube