Kamloops this Week

Kamloops this Week

City of Kamloops to remove ‘COVID is a lie’ posters from power poles

The signs state: “WAKE UP BC!! COVID-19 IS A LIE. “WE LOVE YOU”

  • May. 22, 2020 2:04 p.m.

-Kamloops this Week

Frank Dwyer has admired artwork on power poles as he walks around the Sagebrush neighbourhood. Recently, however, new signs have popped up he wants removed.

The signs state: “WAKE UP BC!! COVID-19 IS A LIE. “WE LOVE YOU” and reference the hashtag #WWG1WGA, which is connected to the extremist right wing conspiracy theory known as QAnon.

Travis View is a San Diego-based writer, conspiracy theory researcher and co-host of the podcast QAnon Anonymous. He has written extensively about Qanon and, in a Washington Post article, summed up the fringe movement’s thusly:

“There is a worldwide cabal of Satan-worshiping pedophiles who rule the world, essentially, and they control everything. They control politicians, and they control the media. They control Hollywood, and they cover up their existence, essentially. And they would have continued ruling the world, were it not for the election of President Donald Trump.”

The hashtag #WWG1WGA means “Where we go one, we go all.”

“There are limits to freedom of expression,” Dwyer said. “In times when we’re all being instructed to pull together, consider how your remarks would affect somebody who just lost their mother to COVID-19 or a physician who’s just come off a 14-hour shift at the hospital. … In Canada, we are a much more tolerant people. We are not inclined to be as extreme as our neighbours to the south. I would call it deluded, misguided and insensitive.”

Dwyer counted between 10 and 12 of the signs, which were printed on white computer paper with black, all-caps san-serif font, placed into laminated page protectors and stapled high atop the polls. Dwyer said someone went to quite the trouble to put up the signs, noting it likely took a ladder to staple the signs, which were attached to poles about seven feet from the ground.

“That’s the big question — who’s doing it?” Dwyer said. “I tend to ask neighbours to keep their eye out. It occurred to me the trouble they took, how high. It’s very deliberate, thought out.”

Dwyer reported the signs to the City of Kamloops’ bylaws department and council. He also contacted public health and raised the issue with the Sagebrush Neighbourhood Association board on Thursday night.

“I don’t want them to be seen by someone who has lost a loved one or, even, many frontline workers live in our area,” he said. “Many hospital employees live where we are.”

Having been made aware of the situation, it appears the city is taking immediate action.

City CAO David Trawin said the signs contravene city bylaws and are illegal. He was made aware of them Friday morning and said bylaws officers will be in the area to remove them.

“It’s an illegal sign. You can’t just be posting whatever you want on anything that’s in a public right of way,” Trawin said. “We generally look the other way, with the sign bylaw, generally if people put stuff up on the telephone polls downtown, saying this concert or this thing or that thing. Technically, they’re all illegal. You’re not allowed signs in a public right of way, other than during elections. We mostly look the other way because what’s the point? They have their event and they come down.”

As for whether the city will look into who posted the signs, Trawin said it would be a difficult task.

The signs will be removed. If they were to pop up again, Trawin said they will again be removed. In previous graffiti incidents, Trawin noted people eventually get frustrated and stop.

Dwyer, meanwhile, will continue to wonder who is behind the signs and whether they have turned up in other areas of the community.

He said he and his wife, both in their late 70s, recently received a phone call from a group that asked if he needed help.

“I said, ‘No.’ They said, ‘Well, we’re a Bible group, a Christian group reaching out to people and they did say words to the effect, ‘We love you.’ I said, ‘No thank you.’

READ MORE: Former Kelowna pharmacist accused of distributing opioids without a prescription

READ MORE: To shut down Snowbirds team after deadly crash would be ‘tragic:’ commander

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Permission to develop a residential treatment centre providing mental health and addiction recovery is being sought at the Tachick Lake Resort purchased by Carrier Sekani Family Services. (Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako photo)
Treatment centre eyed at former Tachick Lake Resort near Vanderhoof

Carrier Sekani Family Services awaiting adoption of rezoning bylaw

An aerial shot of Cedar Valley Lodge this past August, LNG Canada’s newest accommodation for workers. This is where several employees are isolating after a COVID-19 outbreak was declared last Thursday (Nov. 19). (Photo courtesy of LNG Canada)
41 positive COVID-19 cases associated with the LNG Canada site outbreak

Thirty-four of the 41 cases remain active, according to Northern Health

The North Country Inn and Restaurant in Vanderhoof notified the public Friday morning of a positive, COVID-19 case for one of its workers. (Facebook photo)
North Country Inn and Restaurant employee tests positive for COVID-19

The North Country Inn and Restaurant said the employee had not been in contact with its patrons

Cases have gone up in Northern Health in the past week, as they have all over B.C. (K-J Millar/Black Press Media)
Northern Health reports new highest number of COVID-19 cases in one day

Nineteen cases were reported to Public Health last Tuesday (Nov. 17)

FILE – British Columbia provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry wears a face mask as she views the Murals of Gratitude exhibition in Vancouver, on Friday, July 3, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Masks now mandatory in all public indoor and retail spaces in B.C.

Many retailers and businesses had voiced their frustration with a lack of mask mandate before

A man wearing a face mask to help curb the spread of COVID-19 walks in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. The use of masks is mandatory in indoor public and retail spaces in the province. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. records deadliest day of pandemic with 13 deaths, 738 new COVID-19 cases

Number of people in hospital is nearing 300, while total cases near 30,000

(File photo)
Alberta woman charged after allegedly hitting boy with watermelon at Okanagan campsite

Police say a disagreement among friends at an Adams Lake campsite turned ugly

Court of Appeal for British Columbia in Vancouver. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
B.C. woman loses appeal to have second child by using late husband’s sperm

Assisted Human Reproduction Act prohibits the removal of human reproductive material from a donor without consent

Krista Macinnis displays the homework assignment that her Grade 6 daughter received on Tuesday. (Submitted photo)
B.C. mom angry that students asked to list positive stories about residential schools

Daughter’s Grade 6 class asked to write down 5 positive stories or facts

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

B.C. projects targeting the restoration of sockeye salmon stocks in the Fraser and Columbia Watersheds will share in $10.9 million of federal funding to protect species at risk. (Kenny Regan photo)
13 projects protecting B.C. aquatic species at risk receive $11 million in federal funding

Salmon and marine mammals expected to benefit from ecosystem-based approach

Barrels pictured outside Oliver winery, Quinta Ferreira, in May. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
B.C. Master of Wine reflects on industry’s teetering economic state

Pandemic, for some wine makers, has been a blessing in disguise. For others, not so much.

An employee of the Adventure Hotel was taken to hospital on Nov. 20 after she confronted a customer of Empire Coffee about not wearing a mask. File photo.
Nelson hotel employee suffers heart attack after being assaulted in anti-mask incident

An accountant at the Adventure Hotel is in hospital in Kelowna

Most Read