doug ford protest

Anti-vaxxers protested outside Doug Ford's Toronto home in an ugly scene

It was far from a quiet night at Premier Doug Ford's home in Etobicoke, when a few dozen angry protesters showed up on Sunday evening to speak (or shout) out in opposition to the latest round of public health restrictions.

Residents of the typically quiet, suburban street were jolted out of their evening routines by protesters yelling through megaphones, bringing their crazy conspiracy theories about the still-raging pandemic to the front door of the premier.

Protesters clashed with counter-protesters and things got a bit ugly.

On top of the noise disturbance imposed on Ford and neighbours, protesters shined flashlights at the windows of the house in an apparent effort to further disturb anyone inside.

All lights were off in the house, indicating that either nobody was home or a Halloween-like ploy to make the residence look empty.

Continued defiance of the new measures — which include a cap on outdoor gatherings at 25 persons — could spell trouble for the group if they return, Toronto Police reportedly warning attendees that tickets will be handed out if they return for a follow-up demonstration.

Of course, this didn't sit well with the already-fuming demonstrators, and the heavy police presence keeping the peace outside of the premier's home faced insults and more.

They may not be deterred, though, with Sunday supposed to be the first in a two-day protest, plus reports that more protests are on the way, including a Christmas Day demonstration once again slated to take place outside of Doug Ford's home.

It feels like the anti-vax crowd is growing more radical as colder weather thins their herd down to only the most vocal and extreme of the bunch.

Among those in this core group of ideological holdouts, one of the attendees is known as Suzanne/Michelle Robertson, a prominent figure in anti-vax circles.

Lawyer and vocal critic of the anti-vax and other far-right movements, Caryma S'ad, tells blogTO that this isn't Robertson's first rodeo (complete with bullhorn, saying that she "was reportedly charged last year in relation to similar demonstrations at the premier's residence.")

S'ad says that while "it remains to be seen how parties intend to pander (or not) to these groups" in the upcoming election, she finds it "interesting" how a group protesting the premier's policy shares the same memes and opinions as his daughter, Krista Haynes.

"The Premier's stubborn silence and refusal to publicly denounce her views is increasingly a matter of public concern, especially since he has previously admitted to consulting with his family on public policy issues," says S'ad.

"Ontarians deserve to know what is influencing pandemic response decisions."

Lead photo by Suzanne Michelle Robertson

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