“Let Freedom Roll” is the slogan of “The People’s Convoy” set to depart Wednesday morning from Adelanto, California, on its way to Washington, DC, to protest federal coronavirus mandates and call for an end to President Joe Biden’s emergency declaration.
Convoy organizers Marcus Sommers and Maureen Steele spoke to Breitbart News about their “peaceful” transcontinental movement to “defend our freedom” at a time when “our freedom is on the line and tyranny closing in.”
“The freedom to choose is what our country is founded on, what our military has fought for, and died for, and bled for, and sacrificed everything,” Sommers, who has been a trucker for 34 years, told Breitbart News. “We must stand up, this is our duty. … I feel this is also a way, for myself personally, that I can fight for my country and its people.”
“The blue collar boys have historically always been the first to jump in and defend our freedom,” Steele, who is a paralegal, mother, and wife, and had no previous experience with truckers, explained. “Whatever war it’s been, throughout history, it’s always the blue collar boys that are the first in, they sacrifice the most, they’re the first to sign up, and they’re doing it again. I mean, here we are again, in 2022, with our freedoms on the line and tyranny closing in, and one more time, it’s the blue collar boys. So they’re the tip of the spear, and we owe them a world of gratitude.”
Both Sommers and Steele emphasized the importance of truckers to American society. “Without trucks, we are the lifeblood of America. I mean, everybody dies. There would not even be doctors or nurses. They couldn’t even continue on without trucks,” Sommers said, explaining that truckers are often the unseen, unsung heroes of society who allow for access to all things from basic necessities like food and clothing to whatever someone ordered on Amazon.
“The last 23 months of the COVID-19 pandemic have been a rough road for all Americans to travel: spiritually, emotionally, physically, and – not least – financially,” a Saturday press release reads. “With the advent of the vaccine and workable therapeutic agents, along with the hard work of so many sectors that contributed to declining COVID-19 cases and severity of illness, it is now time to re-open the country.”
“It’s about bringing this country together and uniting right now,” Sommers continued. “It’s not necessarily whether or not you’ve gotten the shot. … It’s the freedom to choose, and our freedom of choice. I mean, there’s a lot of people that have gotten the vax that are on board with this as far as losing our freedom to choose whether we want to get the vaccination. … Our freedoms are being stripped from us.”
Sommers and Steele both felt this is America’s last chance to defend itself before the country descends into a tyranny, much like what has been seen in Canada and Australia.
“If we don’t [protest], we’re going to lose our country forever,” Steele said. “For us to have allowed this to go on this long is a shame on us. This is our time to take back our country and can get things right and get things back to normal and send a very loud and large message to the government: You work for us. They seem to have forgotten that. They seem to think that this is a dictatorship that they rule.”
“The majority of people are aligned with us,” she continued. “The left seems to think that they’ve got the majority. They don’t. They’ve got the largest microphones, they’ve got Hollywood, they’ve got mainstream media, and they’ve got professors and teachers. But 80 percent of the country is middle of the road; 80 percent of the country is on board with getting back to normalcy and not having any of this nonsense going on.”
To that end, the Convoy’s primary demand is that the declaration of a National Emergency Concerning the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Pandemic be ended, rescinding all the extra, and supposedly temporary, emergency powers given to the executive branch. Along with that, they demand an end to mask and vaccine mandates, and a restoration to the freedom to choose.
But their demands go further, calling for “accountability” in the form of “bipartisan congressional hearings on the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.”
“We want local, state, and federal investigations on the COVID-19 response,” Steele told Breitbart News. “This is something that can never happen again. And if we don’t unravel what went on and determine exactly what went wrong, and where things went wrong, we could repeat this again in the future, and it must not repeat.”
As Sommers, who met some of the other organizers “fighting overregulation” of the trucking industry in D.C., made clear, this cannot be done without an outgrowth of support from the American people.
“We need the American people’s help, we need everybody that enjoys the freedoms and understands what this is about,” he said. “This is our last shot, this is really like our last shot that we’ve got. … You know, if we have 1,000 trucks, that’s going to probably be about a ten mile long convoy.”
Speaking of those in power, Sommers continued to say that “they fear the American people. They fear numbers. … If we the Americans unite, we have more power than they do. … People, oftentimes, they don’t realize the power that we have within ourselves together as a nation, as a people. It sends such a powerful message when we unite, and they don’t want that.”
“It’s a beautiful thing, like, this is America,” Steele said, calling the Convoy a true “melting pot” with persons from “every walk of life, every nationality.”
“We have moms coming with their kids and Subarus and the family dog,” she continued, saying, “This is the People’s Convoy and they named it that for a reason. It is the people. It is we the people and we the people are speaking up.”
Washington, DC, however, is already wrapped in security fencing, supposedly ahead of the March 1 State of the Union, but is expected to remain over the course of the Convoy protests. The People’s Convoy is not the only one that intends to converge on the nation’s capital.
Despite that, both Sommers and Steele said that once they get to D.C., they intend to “hold the line” until all of their demands are met.
“Never in our history, until Biden got in office, has our White House ever been fenced up like that,” Steele told Breitbart News. “So to say that, you know, they’re doing it for the State of the Union, it’s just absurd what they’ve done. … It’s a very tyrannical move.”
“I think if we can end it at a federal level, and then if possible, move into blue states, or RINO states, but, you know, who knows where and when it’ll end,” Sommers said, continuing that “addressing it at a federal level and holding the line till our demands are met” is the goal.
Steele told Breitbart News that their organization has put together a substantial infrastructure for logistics, maintaining peacefulness and safety, and ensuring that the sort of funding issues experienced by their Canadian counterpart does not affect them.
“So we have an infrastructure that we’ve built of retired military, planners, logistics specialists, tacticians … we’ve got bankers, accountants, lawyers on board, that are ensuring that our money stays safe and doesn’t get tied up,” she said. “We’ve got a security team that’s going to be marshaling with us in the evenings, to make sure that the trucks are inspected, and there’s safety. We’ve got bomb sniffing dogs that are coming. So we’ve got things pretty buttoned up and pretty organized, in very short order.”
“We have all been threatened, our lives have all been threatened,” Sommers said, describing Antifa involvement with threats of violence. “It’s a peaceful event. You know, anything that is different from that is not with our movement or convoy, and we’re doing everything we can to try to safeguard from anything bad happening. We want people to understand that if they see something to not engage and take videos, call local authorities, and do not engage.”
He also said that a recent Newsweek article titled “Proud Boys Member Reportedly Organizing ‘People’s Convoy’ to Washington” was “not the truth,” explaining that the person in question simply signed up for a public Telegram chat — which has over 46,000 members — and that calling him an “organizer” was absurd. “He was not and he is not an organizer for The People’s Convoy, not even at a state level. He is simply just a member of that particular state group.”
Newsweek does not appear to have issued a correction, but the outlet did say it “could not independently confirm the user’s screen name.”
Sommers also explained that they were able to learn from what the Canadians’ experience and therefore would not rely on crowdfunding platforms but rather on their own funding mechanism linked on the Convoy website. He also encourages those who want to participate to buy a personal CB radio “in case the phones do get cut off, service gets shut down.”
The Convoy has partnered with multiple groups in their effort to end the emergency declaration.
“We came out with Ryan Cole, one of the doctors of the global COVID summit,” Steele said. “He works with [Robert] Malone and Peter McCullough, and, you know, Pierre Kory — these doctors backed us immediately for freedom — and so did Josh Yoder of the U.S. Freedom Flyers, he represents 35,000 pilots.”
The press release listed many organizations involved:
The People’s Convoy is a non-partisan effort supported by a cross-cultural and multi-faith consortium of organizations including Robert Kennedy Jr.’s Children’s Health Defense TV – which will be embedding with the convoy and carrying live updates, along with numerous other media outlets – as well as many doctors including the Frontline Covid-19 Critical Care Alliance, liberty-minded lawyers and transportation workers like pilots, and organizations such as The Unity Project, The America Project, Advocates for Citizens’ Rights, U.S. Freedom Flyers, The American Foundation for Civil Liberties & Freedom, and faith leaders from every spectrum. The convoy is being assisted by retired military personnel and security experts, who are spearheading logistics in order to ensure a 100% safe, lawful, and peaceful journey.
Steele told Breitbart News that while the Convoy might start out with a few hundred trucks in California, “we’re going to have thousands of trucks involved in this convoy. … By the time we hit D.C., it’s going to be thousands.”
Breccan F. Thies is a reporter for Breitbart News. You can follow him on Twitter @BreccanFThies.