May 23, 2024
Press Coverage

Campaign ad for fired bus driver Jesse Rau includes guest appearance from the man behind ‘Nose Hill Gentlemen’

The Christian Heritage Party candidate has enlisted a celebrity endorsement, of sorts.

Rau courted controversy in August with his very public refusal to drive Calgary’s new Pride bus. After being fired by Calgary Transit earlier this month, the 30-year-old registered as a candidate in the riding of Calgary Signal Hill.

Now, Rau has released a campaign video featuring another controversial figure in Calgary — Walt Wawra, the man behind ‘Nose Hill Gentlemen’ — a Michigan police officer who made international headlines for a widely-mocked letter that ran in the Calgary Herald three years ago.

Wawra’s 2012 letter to the editor — detailing a seemingly mild encounter in Nose Hill Park while lamenting not having a gun at hand to defend himself — immediately went viral, spawning plenty of ridicule and the hashtag #nosehillgentlemen.

In the eight-minute video, a rifle-toting Rau and Wawra stroll through a wooded area, stopping occasionally to address the camera on topics like gun control, property rights and political corruption.

“I believe man has an inalienable right to protect himself, and his family, whether it be from a wild animal or from the evil intents of evil men,” Wawra says in the video.

“As a police officer, I know that the most efficient and convenient way to protect oneself, is to carry a pistol.”

Wawra, an American citizen, also offered this ringing endorsement of Rau’s candidacy: “I support Jesse Rau because he’s a man who does what he says.”

If you like bears, guns and watching two men in camo talk about how much they love freedom, this video is for you:

Need a refresher on Calgary’s ‘Nose Hill Gentlemen’?

Wawra wrote a letter to the Calgary Herald in 2012 describing an “aggressive” encounter he had while vacation in Calgary during Stampede. Walking in Nose Hill Park, Wawra said he was approached by two young “gentlemen” who he believed were behaving in a threatening manner:

“[I]n broad daylight on a paved trail, two young men approached my wife and me. The men stepped in front of us, then said in a very aggressive tone: ‘Been to the Stampede yet?’” he wrote.

“We ignored them. The two moved closer, repeating: ‘Hey, you been to the Stampede yet?’ I quickly moved between these two and my wife, replying, ‘Gentle-men, I have no need to talk with you, goodbye.’ They looked bewildered, and we then walked past them. I speculate they did not have good intentions when they approached in such an aggressive, disrespectful and menacing manner. I thank the Lord Jesus Christ they did not pull a weapon of some sort, but rather concluded it was in their best interest to leave us alone.”

The letter was lampooned on Twitter and the Herald subsequently published a story confirming Wawra’s letter was not a hoax.

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