NEW YORK—On the rainswept afternoon of Feb. 22, about 75 New Yorkers rallied in front of the Canadian Consulate’s building in midtown Manhattan in support of the Canadian truckers.
In attendance was Dominick Talio, a former operating room nurse from Valley Stream, Long Island, who refused to be vaccinated. He called what’s going on in Canada “a terrible infringement on people’s personal freedom [and] civil liberties.”
“We’re seeing the beginning of that happening here,” he told The Epoch Times.
The rally was organized by NYC teacher Michael Kane, who also runs Teachers for Choice. Kane was recently terminated.
“I was just, a couple of days ago, officially fired by Eric Adams,” he told The Epoch Times. “I loved my job, I loved everyone I worked with, and the city really didn’t care about all that stuff. They just cared about this injection.”
Kane taught special education for over 14 years, most recently at a high school in Jamaica, Queens. He refused to take the jab “for multiple reasons,” including “sincerely held religious beliefs against vaccination in general.”
Kane applied for a religious exemption but was denied. He appealed but was denied again. A lawsuit he filed allowed him to apply a third time but was denied yet again.
He’s currently the plaintiff in Kane v. de Blasio, which is on the verge of being heard by the US Supreme Court.
The demonstrators chanted, “no vaccine mandates,” “stand with Canada,” “we will not comply, “freedom, freedom, freedom,” “my body, my choice, your vaccine you won’t force” and “coercion is not consent.”
The ages of attendees ranged from mid-20s through senior citizens and included a wide variety of heritages.
Several speakers addressed the group using a bullhorn, including Kane, who spoke twice.
On the Teachers for Choice website, Kane lists the four demands the group makes, including having Canadian Prime Minster Justin Trudeau speak directly with the protesting truckers.
“Even after the Canadians got their heads bashed in, they still danced,” Kane said. “And they still partied out in the streets of Ottawa. I think they’ve really shown the world how to resist in peace, love and joy.”
Kane encouraged his group to dance with provided music at the end of the second hour.
The rally was held concurrently with one in Detroit and Atlanta and was the second rally Kane organized at the Canadian Consulate’s building in as many weeks.