This may be an unpopular opinion, but I don’t want the Saint Jacinda Saves the Muslims movie cancelled.

Yes, I agree with almost all of the criticisms made of it (hypocritical as many of them are) – but still, I don’t want it cancelled.

I have trenchantly criticised Cancel Culture, and it would be the height of hypocrisy to support it just because it targets someone I don’t like or agree with. Anyone on the right who joins in the crusade against this movie will have no cause to complain, the next time someone else is cancelled for imaginary “transphobia” or “racism”.

Plans for a movie depicting New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s widely lauded response to the Christchurch terrorist attacks suffered a blow on Monday when a producer pulled out of the project following a public backlash.

Criticism emerged on social media after plans for the production, to be called They Are Us and directed by New Zealander Andrew Niccol, were announced late last week. Objections centred on the movie’s focus on the prime minister, to be played by Australian actress Rose Byrne, rather than victims of the massacre on March 15, 2019.

Speaking over the weekend, Ardern said she felt that she should not be the film’s focus, and added in a television interview Monday that it felt “very soon and very raw” for the country. A petition organised in part by members of the Muslim community, calling for the film to be scrapped, received tens of thousands of signatures.

The Age

Certainly, many New Zealanders, its Muslim community especially, may be right to say, “too soon”. Guled Mire is spot-on when he criticises it for “this white saviour mentality”.

But to rail against its focus on Ardern? Pass me the barf bag.

In the wake of the crime, the media and the chattering classes went into an orgy of Ardern-worship. They positively wet themselves over Cindy-in-a-Hijab, especially when she was immortalised in a vomit-inducing giant mural reminiscent of a Mao portrait looming over Tiananmen Square.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – MAY 17: A mural painting depicts Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern hugs a relative of Christchurch terror attack victim is seen on a silo in Melbourne, Australia on May 17, 2019. (Photo by Recep Sakar/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

The protestations from Ardern herself ring especially hollow.

Forgive my cynicism, but in the aftermath of Christchurch, Ardern looked every inch a woman revelling in the attention. Playing dress-ups and mugging for the cameras.

As for wittering that Christchurch is somehow “not her story”: Ardern is tying herself into knots of backflipping self-contradiction.

After all, it was she who coined the Orwellian “They Are Us” slogan. Never mind that this bit of semantic virtue-signalling inherently contradicts itself: they is the subject equivalent of them. It’s the antonym of “us”. “They are us” doesn’t make a lick of grammatical sense.

Moreover, if they really are us, then their story is our story. Jacinda Ardern can’t have it both ways.

But I digress.

The cardinal point here is that They Are Us should not be cancelled. When Magda Szubanski shot her gob off once too often, I didn’t want her new project cancelled either. Fortunately, it went ahead; the audiences walked and the show is dying the death it deserves. The market spoke, not the Twitter mob.

So let They Are Us go ahead. If audiences stay away in droves, the people behind such an ill-conceived project will lose a bucket of money. Good.

And the preening, wallowing, virtue-signalling white saviourism of Jacinda Ardern and her cult-like followers will be exposed for all to see.

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Don’t Cancel ‘They Are Us’
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Lushington D. Brady

Punk rock philosopher. Liberalist contrarian. Grumpy old bastard. I grew up in a generational-Labor-voting family. I kept the faith long after the political left had abandoned it. In last decade or...