Supporters of former president Donald Trump at a rally in Wilmington, North Carolina on Friday revived the one-finger salute – that some see as a symbol for QAnon – that had previously occurred at an event in Ohio the previous week.
The salute happened toward the end of Mr Trump’s rally for Republican candidates in the state at the Aero Center in Wilmington as dramatic music played in the background while the video screens on both ends of the stage played an image of the American flag.
Like at his rally in Youngstown, Ohio last week, supporters began to raise up their fingers, which some have speculated might be a QAnon symbol reflecting the slogan “Where we go one we go all”, as the song “Mirrors” by Will Van De Crommert played.
Some have noted how “Mirrors” bears striking similarity to a Richard Feelgood composition called “Wwg1wga”. Mr Van De Crommert has denounced “Wwg1wga.”
But unlike the rally in Youngstown, fewer people did the salute. One attendee told Lisa Desjardins of PBS NewsHour that the finger salute is meant as a sign for “Wwwg1wga.” But apparently someone from the guest management firm Colorado Security Agency that staffed the event told the attendee to take it down.
Also, the company says it provides security.
I’m not sure the word matters though - they were official staff at the event and clearly had been directed to watch for this kind of gesture and to shut it down.
And they were dressed far more like security than, say, ushers.
— Lisa Desjardins (@LisaDNews) September 24, 2022
At the same time, Mr Trump has posted numerous memes and images related to QAnon on his networking platform Truth Social.
Lisa Pyle, who wore a hat with the Q symbol, told The Independent that she appreciated his use of Q symbolism.
“I think it’s wonderful,” she said, but added she likely would not vote in 2022. “Would you vote in a broken election if you knew? If you knew the truth?”
Some of the people at the rally wore merchandise with QAnon symbolism on it. One SUV parked outside the Aero Center had an image on the back window with former president John F Kennedy, his son John F Kennedy Jr – both figures in Q lore – and Mr Trump. Similarly Mike Fox ran a booth outside the rally with the Q symbol on it.
“I think it’s about time ... we need the truth to come out, whether people like it or not” he told The Independent. “We want people to realise we are in the moment of the great awakening.”
Mr Fox said he wasn’t watching the rally because he was running his booth, but he said that Mr Trump is giving a wink and a nod to supporters of Q.
“I believe as he drops these truth bombs on us, people become more awake to what’s really going on, then they’ll start to research themselves, won’t believe the lies anymore,” he said.
But not everyone understood the last part as a QAnon moment.
“Trump cares about us, the people,” John Darrow of Jacksonville, North Carolina told The Independent after the rally and said he didn’t know why people were raising their fingers.
“I was in the back in the back,” he said. “I saw it but I didn’t know what they were doing.”