June 25, 2020

Guy Sebastian: Australia’s Falling Idol

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Okay, it’s a clickbait headline. But Guy Sebastian is cooked. Cancelled. This Australian Idol is set to topple along with any number of statues.

He’s as cooked as Colonial Beer and The Wiggles.

His crime? Thanking the Prime Minister Scott Morrison for including him in the round table discussion with representatives from the Australian arts community, on the funding models for that COVID-19 affected sector.

Guy was invited in, along with a host of other artists from across a variety of industries.

Cue a Twitter knicker-twist.  A cancellation of Guy Sebastian.

Including this gem:

Today was going fine, but now I have to break it to my 9-year-old that Guy Sebastian is a scab, as we delete all his songs from her Apple music.

Er, no you don’t.  You don’t even had to break your stride. You have to take a deep breath, and start adulting. Or you can heap your dysfunction onto your 9-year-old and ensure the money you save on any future Guy Sebastian releases will be directed towards therapy when your child is fifteen.

You see if you just take that deep breath you will discover that today, for you who can afford Apple products produced at minimum wage in China, is still going just fine. Dandy even.  Apart from your poor taste in music.

You see, I’m well ahead of the curve when it comes to Guy Sebastian. He got cancelled from my music play list pretty much the first time I heard him sing.  Not my taste at all.

And how about this from John Mair QGM?

Guy Sebastian, you are now DEAD TO ME”

To which Guy might reply, that’s okay cos angels brought me here.

It’s kinda funny. Kinda. But also just another sad example in a growing list of sad examples of the outrage flotilla that seeks its meaning from attaching itself to genuine super tankers of outrage.  It’s the tip of an iceberg that’s sinking a lot of people, and will continue to do so.

Granted it’s Twitter, and granted that Guy was probably not even aware of John Mair QGM’s existence up until this point, and no doubt doesn’t care, this is a scary expose of the infantile level of engagement about serious matters in the culture.

Perhaps more scary still is the visceral level of loathing towards our Prime Minister from those who increasingly see everything more zealously than they should.  The level of  righteous fury is astonishing.

More so given how little righteous fury is allowed to be attributed to God these days. We were told just a few short decades ago that a God of final judgement was too galling, too unpalatable a deity to be allowed.  And little by little such a God was ushered to the sidelines.

Only to be replaced by us. Now we have a milquetoast “God” available to anyone who wants that God (turns out no one does). And the final judgement fury which casts its burning eye over all perceived sin?  We’ll take that from here thanks very much.

I’m going to quote him again, because he needs to be quoted.  Douglas Murray in The Madness of Crowds says this:

We live in a world where actions can have consequences we could never have imagined, where guilt and shame are more at hand than ever, and where we have no means whatsoever of redemption.  We do not know who could offer it, who could accept it, and whether it is a desirable quality compared to an endless cycle of fiery certainty and denunciation.

Dear old Guy Sebastian, who junked his formerly untested, but generally orthodox Christian faith because it was too much about rules, and because it did not affirm same sex relationships.  Fiery denunciation was what he thought he was stepping away from, when in fact he was stepping right into it.

He’s been schooled by the rules, it’s just a different set of rules. And rules that keep changing. Rules that have no permanent line in the sand. Rules that cannot allow for forgiveness or reconciliation.

That’s the nature of cancel culture, it will keep on cancelling until there is nothing less than a deep impersonal Zealotry Machine run by who knows who.

You see, Guy Sebastian might be able to laugh a bit.  But he’ll still be left looking over his shoulder. Still waiting for the trickle to grow to a stream to grow to a flood. And then looking for a new financial gig.

As a friend said to me memorably today:

What do you expect when we’ve incentivised performative outrage?

Incentivised performance outrage!  Coming to a theatre stage near you.

Perhaps Guy will standing out front busking, holding out a hand for part of that COVID funding.




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There is no guarantee that Jesus will return in our desired timeframe. Yet we have no reason to be anxious, because even if the timeframe is not guaranteed, the outcome is! We don’t have to waste energy being anxious; we can put it to better use.

Stephen McAlpine – futureproof

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