Residents near two Cliff Bungalow homes in Calgary’s southwest are concerned the recent appearance of puzzling blue flags is a recruitment tactic for a group tied to radical right conspiracy theories.
Two QAnon flags are flying on homes along Cliff Street SW. The flags are blue with a Marvel Comics Punisher skull in the middle of a large “Q” letter.
The flags were coincidentally first noticed after Corey Hurren allegedly rammed his truck through the gates of Rideau Hall in an alleged attempt to cause harm to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on July 2.
Before the incident, Hurren apparently posted QAnon content on his company’s GrindHouse Fine Foods social media page, according to media outlet Al Jazeera. The post circulated around the internet with people alleging that Hurren was motivated by QAnon’s conspiracy theories.
Homeowner says it’s not about supporting a conspiracy group
Bobbi, the homeowner that flies one of the two QAnon flags displayed on the street, said it’s simply a cool design and in support of a 2020 Mike Smith documentary called Out of Shadow.
“It’s just a logo with the punisher skull in the middle. I think it’s cool but it’s for a movie I saw about how big media lies and politicians have ulterior motives,” she said.
She added that the flag isn’t a statement or representing a conspiracy group. It shows general skepticism about the current events happening in the world today, Bobbi said.
The second home displaying a QAnon flag couldn’t be reached by the time of this article’s publication. LiveWire Calgary made several attempts to reach the residents at their doorstep.
Residents say the flags are ‘against the grain of social progress’
Qassim Merali, who lives just two houses away from the flags, said that it seemed the flags are being passed out as a recruitment tactic.
“The first person to put up a flag had essentially printed out a stack of these flags and was actively recruiting people in the neighborhood to put up more flags,” he said.
“Basically to help amplify the message they’re trying to spread out around town.”
Merali feels the flags are in response to the Black Lives Matter movements and protest happening around the city. He feels it represents a step backward from recent events in Calgary.
“It was upsetting to see that because I felt that it’s really just going against the grain of social progress,” he said.
“At the same time, it’s hard to make any assumptions, because I’ve never spoken to these people. But from the flag, it was quite apparent to me where these people stood on the political spectrum.”