It’s Official - Mary Poppins Has Been Canceled For 'Discriminatory Language'

Marya Dunning | February 27, 2024
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Move over, Aunt Jemima - it’s Mary Poppins’ turn to be canceled!

The British Board of Film Classification has raised the classic Disney children's film’s rating to PG from its previous rating of U - meaning that it was free of any “material likely to offend or harm" - for its supposed use of “discriminatory language.”

The offensive language in question? "Hottentots," which has recently been deemed an insensitive word for the Khoekhoe people of South Africa.

It is worth noting that this term was still being used formally in academia nearly two decades after the release of Mary Poppins. In addition, the word itself was used exactly twice throughout the entire movie.

Even still, “We understand from our racism and discrimination research, and recent classification guidelines research, that a key concern for people, parents in particular, is the potential to expose children to discriminatory language or behavior which they may find distressing or repeat without realizing the potential offense,” said a spokesperson for the British Board of Film Classification.

Related: California 'Reparations' Pushers Want Business Licenses Based On Race

An anecdote is not data, I know. But I watched Mary Poppins when I was 5 and, to this day, I do not hold any discriminatory views toward the Khoekhoe people.

Since we’re canceling movies based on social norms adopted after the movie’s release, what’s next? Should we sic the #MeToo movement on The Little Mermaid’s Prince Eric for the song "Kiss the Girl"? Should we censor every use of the word “gypsy” in The Hunchback of Notre Dame?

Unfortunately, this has a nonzero chance of happening.

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