Canadian truckers get support from their American “big-rig” brethren


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Canadian truckers who have stood their ground at the US-Canada border – both physically and philosophically – enjoy the enthusiastic support of some big truck drivers here in our country, even when the police break in.

Long-haul and short-haul truckers who pass through cities and towns in both countries perform “sometimes dangerous, often difficult” work. They deserve everyone’s respect, two trucking company employees told Fox News Digital in separate phone interviews this week.

John Brubaker, 62, of Hampton, Iowa, is a transportation supervisor for a Tennessee-based trucking company. Father and grandfather, Brubaker worked behind the wheel of a big rig for more than a decade before moving into a supervisory role.

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“It’s completely wrong that Canadian leaders are using emergency powers to impact these truckers,” he told Fox News Digital in a phone interview. “It shows no respect for the huge role truckers play in the economy – and it’s dictatorial.”

Brubaker says Canadian truckers have caught the world’s attention with their blockade.

“You have to be smart enough to do that,” he said.

Protests at the Ottawa border began several weeks ago when truckers decided to take a stand and oppose Canada’s new rule requiring them to be fully vaccinated against COVID.

Police line up to prepare to enforce an injunction against a protest that blocked traffic on the Ambassador Bridge by protesters against COVID-19 restrictions, in Windsor, Ont., Saturday, February 12, 2022.
(Nathan Denette/The Canadian Press via AP)

If truckers are not vaccinated against COVID-19, they face a two-week quarantine – an action that also impacts their livelihoods and the economic supply chain.

On Monday, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau invoked that country’s Emergencies Act, a rare measure that gives the government temporary powers to deal with border blockades, including using tough legal and financial measures against participating truckers.

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Brubaker thinks truckers in the United States would also protest if they were deprived of their freedoms.

“We live under enough rules in our industry, and we don’t want to be pushed too far,” he told Fox News Digital. “Trudeau treats these people who work hard and try to earn a living as if they were minors who need to be told how to be safe,” he added.

Calling truckers “very skilled and highly trained professionals,” Brubaker said they are the ones who know best how to take care of themselves and their families, “including their own occupational health and safety.”

“Truckers just want to be heard.”

— Trucking Supervisor John Brubaker of Iowa to Fox News Digital

“Truckers just want to be heard,” he noted, pointing out that virtually everything Americans eat, wear and consume — from “raw materials to finished product” — is handled by a trucker at some point.

Guido Miller is a trucker in northeast Iowa and works at the same Tennessee-based company where Brubaker works. Married with three adult children, Miller, 52, has been a truck driver for 25 years.

Miller drives many hours alone each week and often spends the night in his van.

Trucker Guido Miller, who works for a Tennessee-based company, is shown here. "Truckers are not super-spreaders," he told Fox News Digital.

Trucker Guido Miller, who works for a Tennessee-based company, is shown here. “Truckers are not super-spreaders,” he told Fox News Digital.
(Guido Miller)

“I’m in the cab of my truck driving down the road. I’m not a risk to people,” he said. “Truckers are not super-spreaders.”

Miller thinks the actions against Canadian truckers are ridiculous.

“Things are calming down with COVID – and suddenly truck drivers are a major health risk?” he said.

Miller highlighted some of the burdens he says truckers already face in their jobs. He said trucking is an over-regulated industry in Canada and the United States, with “relentless” rules, taxes and other burdens placed on companies and independent operators.

He called the current situation in Canada “a pot that’s been simmering for a while.”

The truckers are only trying to get the Canadian government to reconsider the mandate and “listen to the people it really affects,” he said.

Noting that both countries have been facing coronavirus mandates for more than two years now, Miller said: “In the United States, we are finally easing our own restrictions, and here is Canada imposing these new rules on truckers, many of whom have been vaccinated.”

Supporters and truckers in front of Parliament Hill during a protest in downtown Ottawa, Canada, February 12, 2022.

Supporters and truckers in front of Parliament Hill during a protest in downtown Ottawa, Canada, February 12, 2022.
(Mohamed Kadri/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

“Do it, or you’re bankrupt” is the government’s message to these hard-working drivers, Miller said.

Brubaker, for his part, pointed to the fact that truckers have already proven they care about safety.

Says Brubaker, “If they’re trusted to meet multiple safety standards every day, why can’t they be trusted to know if they need to be vaccinated?”

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These two American trucking professionals are fully vaccinated. They want their northern colleagues to have the personal autonomy to make their own health decisions.

Ironically, according to Canada’s Transport Minister, Omar Alghabra, approximately 90% of Canadian truck drivers are currently vaccinated.

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The truckers are “independent at heart,” Brubaker said, adding that they are freedom-loving people who are willing to spend hours alone on the highway in all weathers to get an on-time delivery.

“Truckers are a special breed that believe in getting things done,” he noted. “These Canadian drivers are our big brothers.”


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