Are X-ray radios soluble in emergency calls for public safety? Quebec has landed in blood red. This long-spared city looked at the metropolis with a smirk in the spring, almost immune to the killer virus. No more playing in the Gallic village on its Cap Diamant which resists the invader! But what to do with the troublemakers of the waves of the capital who lend the microphone to the conspirators and stoke the anti-mask inferno of resistance to containment measures?
Mayor Régis Labeaume had already, without naming her, warned his flock against the excesses of CHOI Radio X. On Monday, the City cracked down by removing its advertisements from the cursed station, presenting it as a danger to public health. A host of private advertisers followed suit. “This behavior is likely to increase the current level of contamination which has a major impact on public health and on the local economy,” read the municipal press release.
We know the rest. Régis Labeaume receives threats from social networks and files a complaint in the wake. A suspect is arrested. The mayor swears that his administration will never buy advertising in such a box again. A true state of war in a city where garbage radios constitute an immense parallel power. By ripple effect, all these successive defections of private or paragovernmental advertisers: Hydro-Quebec, Bell, Desjardins, alouette! hurt the station.
As of Friday, the Quebec government backed off its “tailor-made” COVID education campaign seeking to patch up the controversial comments made at Jeff Fillion’s lair. It seemed obvious that the radio would refuse to pass these anti-conspiracy messages aimed directly at its customers and slaying the voices of its prophets. We find them delusional, but they defend their theses. The state would have done better to save its campaign costs. You might as well go for a publicity boycott, Labeaume style, rather than trying to infiltrate the premises with such a conspicuous Trojan horse.
Listening to CHOI Radio X while in Quebec City is a hard test for people of common sense, but it galvanizes crowds of listeners fevered by the loud cries from the sound box. We hear the same arguments as those launched by the pro-Trump: conspiracy of elites against the people, resistance to health diktats deemed insane since COVID would be a hoax (sic) and individual rights would be violated. It ends in noisy and disorderly demonstrations. Ironically, the new measures put in place in the red zones require anti-masks … to wear masks to parade. It won’t be easy for them! We still expect many events across the province this Saturday. You can not stop progress.
Quebec does not rule alone in its backyard. Montreal and the other cities do not do much better. Conspirators don’t need a junk radio to get their teeth into it, but it does offer them a tremendous sounding board in the capital. And good luck to Régis Labeaume for this showdown where the two camps take a volley of blows!
“Under the guise of the idea of freedom of opinion, this organization promotes ideas opposing health measures,” claimed the municipality to justify its withdrawal from the airwaves. Enough to rekindle the entire debate around freedom of expression that is going on in France and here. According to the logic of the principle to be defended above all else, a huge legion of sympathizers should fly to the rescue of the Quebec station battered by its mayor and the city’s merchants, even if it puts lives in danger and practices disinformation. massive. Except that his cause raises in the traditional media, we understand it, little sympathy …
CHOI Radio X’s situation places champions of free speech, ignoring collective repercussions, in front of their own contradictions. Should we support these troublemakers headlong? Yes ? No ? Here we are, splashing around in the muddy grounds where right and responsibility, public interest and editorial choices collide. The blurred reality of our dark days when nothing is white or black. But complicated as hell.
It is clear that manipulating the population with absurd and deleterious theses is a right. But the City also has the leisure to cut funding to CHOI Radio X. And commentators have the leisure to blame evil spirits who push their fellow citizens to face a murderous freewheeling virus. With mad (and vain?) Hope to see dangerous agitators losing ground in this strange and municipal civil war.