A video posted Wednesday to Twitter shows protesters screaming profanities at Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
The crowd relentlessly swore and yelled at the prime minister as local police attempted to usher him past the protesters and into Jackson Square Plaza in Hamilton, Ontario, on Jan. 24. The crowd repeatedly called Trudeau a “tyrant” and “traitor,” and several angry Canadians could be heard shouting demands for his resignation. The video clip, which has gone viral with well over 2.5 million views as of Thursday morning, was filled with endless shouts of “fuck you” and “fuck Trudeau,” as he made his way through the swarm of irate citizens.
CRAZY: Justin Trudeau swarmed by angry protesters outside the Bread Bar in Hamilton. pic.twitter.com/GnI3jdHn89
— Harrison Faulkner (@Harry__Faulkner) January 25, 2023
Trudeau was dressed in a black trench coat and was barely visible through the screen of security agents that surrounded him at every angle. When his face surfaced amid the crowd, he was seen looking all around him and surveying the chaotic scene.
The video shows a protester carrying a “we love the fringe” flag, which is a direct reference to the statement “fringe minority” that Trudeau used to describe the anti-vaccine population. Protesters proudly raised a variety of name-calling signs dedicated to Trudeau and held them high as he walked past them.
Uniformed police officers, police in bright yellow vests, suited security and private security details dressed in pedestrian outfits were all visible among the sizable entourage that struggled to keep the prime minister shielded from the heated gathering of irate citizens.
Someone in the crowd held up an inflatable sheep, and another person wore a mask that said, “99.8% survival rate,” seemingly in reference to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Trudeau was visiting the city to attend a Liberal Party of Canada retreat. They were scheduled to discuss the looming recession and health care issues in Canada, according to CTV News. When asked if he felt the scene that unfolded around him was a “secure situation,” Trudeau said, “a handful of angry people do not define what Hamilton is or what democracy is in this country.” (RELATED: Justin Trudeau Appears On ‘Canada’s Drag Race’)
“The welcome I’ve gotten here in Hamilton has been extraordinary,” he said, according to CTV News.
Trudeau went on to encourage citizens to gather in protest to express their views.
“It’s really, really important in our democracy that people can express their disagreement or displeasure or even anger with various governments,” he said, according to CTV News.
Reporters asked the prime minister if the outrage would discourage him from holding large, open events, but he seemed unaffected by the protesters and hateful comments.
“We’re going to continue to be out there,” he said. “We’re not going to let a handful of angry people interfere with the democratic processes that Canadians have always taken pride in.”