Anti-maskers, the alt-right, and leftist messaging

Last Tuesday, hundreds of people gathered in Winkler, Manitoba to publicly oppose their school division’s COVID-19 precautions, including mandated mask-wearing for students. This was the latest anti-mask rally in a string of demonstrations across Canada in recent months.

While the rallies themselves aren’t particularly threatening (there have been many and politicians generally denounce them) the messaging being used by demonstrators is concerning because its plucked straight from the lexicon of progressive social justice movements.   In Winkler, one young girl held a sign that read, “My body, my choice” and another girl’s sign said, “Freedom to choose.” Another protestor waved a placard with a photo of a person wearing a mask with the writing over top: “We can’t breathe.”

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