As news spread that a PEI police department was planning to torture drunk drivers with Nickelback’s music, many were laughing, except for the band itself.
A spokesperson for the Kensington Police says Nickelback’s rep reached out to them asking for their viral Facebook post to be taken down immediately.
Constable Robb Hartlen has now issued an apology for his initial post, taking to Facebook once more to clarify the meaning behind his actions: “Somewhere in the noise, the message of Don’t Drink and Drive was overshadowed by negativity towards the band I said I would play if you did,” he wrote on Friday next to an image of a Post-It that read “Sorry.”
“At first I admit I was fine with the way I worded the post. I was sure a hugely successful band would be fine with a little good will shade thrown their way, after all it’s for a good cause. But the more successful the post became the less the Don’t Drink and Drive message was mentioned and the fact we love or love to hate Nickelback took centre stage,” he continued. “And that prompted me to think less about Nickelback as the ‘Entity’ and more about the 4 guys, 4 human beings from Alberta who were dragged into this international story. And the more I thought about that,the less funny the humour seemed.”
“We are better than that,” the officer added.
According to TMZ, the request was carried out politely, however, the band simply refused to be the “butt” of another joke.
The initial Facebook post went viral earlier this week after Hartlen launched his new drunk driving campaign. “The Kensington Police Service will be out for the remainder of year looking for those dumb enough to feel they can drink and drive,” the message read along a photo of a sealed Nickelback cassette. “And when we catch you, and we will catch you, on top of a hefty fine, a criminal charge and a years driving suspension we will also provide you with a bonus gift of playing the offices (sic) copy of Nickelback in the cruiser on the way to jail.”
“Now, now, no need to thank us, we figure if you are foolish enough to get behind the wheel after drinking then a little Chad Kroeger and the boys is the perfect gift for you,” he continued. “So please, lets not ruin a perfectly good unopened copy of Nickelback. You don’t drink and drive and we won’t make you listen to it.”
Hartlen opened up to the CBC this week about the department’s new strategy, saying, “What we were trying to do is put a little humour into a very serious matter of drinking and driving. What it does is it sparks that conversation, it pushes that idea that everybody knows with a little bit of humour.”
“Poor Nickelback. They take the brunt of a nation’s joke, and I’m sure they’re crying all the way to the bank,” he added before revealing he enjoys a few of the band’s hits.
Hartlen went on to mention that the Nickelback choice was also fitting due to frontman Chad Kroeger’s 2006 drunk driving arrest in British Columbia.