Justin Trudeau, still the prime minister of Canada, is the first person in history to invoke the Emergencies Act, a law enacted in the 1980s to allow the government to take special, temporary action to deal with an “urgent and critical situation” that “seriously endangers the lives, health or safety of Canadians.” Little Justin is embarrassed by the thousands of truckers in Canada who are protesting, first of all, the country’s vaccine mandate but, more to the point, the government’s intrusion into the lives and livelihoods of the people. Justin is embarrassed. That’s the real...

Justin Trudeau, still the prime minister of Canada, is the first person in history to invoke the Emergencies Act, a law enacted in the 1980s to allow the government to take special, temporary action to deal with an “urgent and critical situation” that “seriously endangers the lives, health or safety of Canadians.” Little Justin is embarrassed by the thousands of truckers in Canada who are protesting, first of all, the country’s vaccine mandate but, more to the point, the government’s intrusion into the lives and livelihoods of the people. Justin is embarrassed. That’s the real national emergency.

In response, Trudeau is transforming Canada into a police state. People with tow trucks, he said, will be “coerced” into moving the rigs of recalcitrant truckers. Anyone associated with the Freedom Convoy will see their bank accounts and social media accounts frozen. People will be arrested, indicted, jailed. The ghastly bride-of-Frankenstein Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland spoke darkly of expanding “Canada’s anti-money laundering and terrorist financing rules so that they cover crowdfunding platforms and the payment service providers they use,” as well as cryptocurrencies and other digital assets.

You know that democracies are in a terminal stage when the junta aspirants treat every challenge to their tenure as a terrorist threat.

How will Canadians react to this latest infringement on their liberties? Will they, true to stereotype, mutter a bit and back down? Maybe. But maybe they will take inspiration from Roman history and mount a modern-day secessio plebis.

Livy recounts five episodes, from 494 to 287 BC, in which the plebs said “Enough!” and took to the hills, absenting themselves from participation in the social, economic and military life of Rome. The issues were various: terms of military service, marriage between castes, debts and property rights. One of the most significant was the second secessio, which took place in 449 BC and involved a revolt of the common people against the Decemviri, the tyrannical patrician committee of ten men who had arrogated all state power to themselves and were attempting to neuter the plebian tribunates. It worked. The patricians backed down, and the people chalked up a victory.

Perhaps it’s time for the Canadians to crack open their Livy. I suspect that Daniel Bulford already has, at least in spirit. Until a week or so ago, Bulford, a sharpshooter and former member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, was part of Little Justin’s security. Outraged at the government’s high-handed treatment of the truckers, he quit and became an advisor to the protestors. I applaud his spirit and I hope others follow suit. What Canada needs now is a secessio plebis or, to use a more modern term, a general strike: bring the government to its knees and eject the junta-loving suits that are the new face of tyranny.

And what about south of the 49th parallel? I note that plenty of Americans are taking the lead of their Maple Leaf cousins and are starting Freedom Convoys of their own. No wonder the Department of Homeland Security (how’s that for a totalitarian euphemism) has just issued a bulletin outlining the ways “false or misleading narratives” — a.k.a., the expression of political opinion at variance with the regime narrative — are evidence of “extremism” or incipient terrorist inclinations.

Americans are reputedly less polite and less pacific than their northern cousins. Homegrown secessions of the people are likely to be considerably more rambunctious.