The Nose Hill Gentleman Story A Symbol of the Canadian-US Divide

In case you've been in a women's soccer induced coma since Tuesday here's a little backgrounder on #NoseHillGentlemen. An American tourist named Walt Wawra, a police officer for 20 years in Kalamazoo, Mich. stirred a social media storm this week with his comments that he'd feel safer in the park, if Canadian laws allowed him to carry a handgun. It seems that during a trip through Nose Hill Park in Calgary with his wife, the couple were asked by two men if they had “Been to the Stampede yet?” Despite describing the men as bewildered, Wawra thanked “the Lord Jesus Christ they did not pull a weapon of some sort.”

The Edmonton Journal's says, "The fact that so many readers have written in, or posted comments online, wondering if it was for real, speaks volumes about the cultural differences between Canadians and Americans. It gives the lie to those who say that Canadians are no different than Americans."

The paranoid Kalamazoo cop has been ridiculed widely in the MSM these last few days over his imagined need to bear arms in the Calgary park usually noted for an abundance of dog walkers and mountain bikers but nowhere has the letter sparked a frenzy anywhere near as huge as on Twitter where the hashtag #NoseHillGentlemen is abuzz. Interestingly many of the early Canadian commenters on Twitter and beyond thought this story was a prank, Americans didn't.

32 Americans are shot to death every day by guns, most of them purchased legally. Americans, from a Canadian perspective, are gun crazy, paranoid and fearful. Canadians see their American cousins as being manipulated by a powerful corporate gun lobby who's money controls their corrupt government which in turn results in the non-regulations and ignorance state-side. 32 a day...hard to disagree.

But many Americans do disagree, many Americans truly believe they have the right to bear arms as much to protect themselves from the government as from strangers in the park. That portion of my fellow Americans should take a moment to realize their constitutional rights are being shredded everyday by the police state who listens to their phones, reads their emails and uses torture in their name etc. and that 'packing' provides zero protection from those who steal their cherished 'freedom' now-a-days.

Having been born in and lived in the US my first 21 years i was indoctrinated by the gun culture from day 1. Then 43 years ago i moved to Canada. The old saying that says 'you can take the boy outta America, but you can't take America outta the boy' is only part true cause this ol' boy has learned a new trick or two and now sees the gun culture through Canadian eyes.