If you’ve never had a pizza from The Grand in Ottawa then you don’t know what you are missing. The place is a fantastic spot year round but in the summer has an amazing and enviable patio.
This past weekend The Grand was fined $880 for violating Ontario’s emergency lockdown orders. The fine was issued by Ottawa by-law on Sunday because the restaurant was allowing customers to eat their take out pizza on the patio.
The restaurant was not serving the customers on the patio, just allowing them to sit outside and eat. People eating the same pizza on nearby park benches were not fined for doing the same thing just feet away.
It’s all very arbitrary.
Even more arbitrary when you realize that this pizza joint is a very short walk from the spot where Prime Minister Justin Trudeau joined protesters over the weekend. The Grand is even closer to the spot where Trudeau took the knee than the office he walked from.
If you’ve seen those photos or the video then you know that the protest violated several of the same emergency orders that Ottawa bylaw cited in fining The Grand.
As I wrote here, this is not about calling out the protesters, this is about calling out the politicians who want different sets of rules.
Ford government cabinet minister Lisa MacLeod came to the defence of The Grand on Twitter.
That’s great but she’s part of the cabinet that put these orders in and part of the cabinet that can get them changed.
Ontario’s case count continues to fall. Fewer than 200 new cases on Sunday, 243 new cases reported on Monday.
We know where the trouble spots are. Our medical officials know how to handle this. It’s time to end the lockdown that has been going on for nearly three months despite much of the province not dealing with many cases at all.
This can be done reasonably and responsibly. It’s time.