Responding to overwhelming criticism, Universal Pictures announced Saturday it has canceled the planned September release of the film “The Hunt” about liberals hunting conservative “Deplorables” who fit the description of supporters of President Trump.

In a statement, a Universal Pictures spokesperson said “the studio has decided to cancel our plans to release the film … we understand that now is not the right time to release this film.”

The cancelation is a victory for common sense and decency. The film – called “a satirical social thriller” by the studio – sounded thoroughly disgusting.


There is nothing funny about murdering innocent people. It shouldn’t have taken the tragic mass murders in Ohio and Texas last weekend to make that obvious fact even more obvious.

“The Hunt” was supposed to satirize the ongoing culture war between liberal elites and Deplorables – the insulting term Hillary Clinton coined for some supporters of then-presidential candidate Donald Trump.

A lot of the buzz surrounding the movie stems from a violent and bloody two-and-a-half-minute trailer that was released several days ago.


Understandably, initial reaction to the trailer centered on the horrific callousness and immorality of hunting and killing people for their ideologically conservative beliefs. It’s quite jarring to see.

The trailer seemed to be tapping into the same sort of anger and sense of disenfranchisement that many believe led to Trump’s populist rise.

There is nothing funny about murdering innocent people. It shouldn’t have taken the tragic mass murders in Ohio and Texas last weekend to make that obvious fact even more obvious.

Imagine the protests if the film had taken a different tack and portrayed Trump supporters hunting down supporters of one of the Democratic presidential candidates. The protests would have been justified.

Since “The Hunt” was supposed to be a satirical piece, allow me to offer a response in a similar vein, although I believe mine is actually rooted in truth.

From my perspective, liberals have been – metaphorically speaking – “hunting” religious conservatives for years. They have been attempting to deconstruct our traditional values, as well as seeking to tear down all the institutions that so many of us hold dear. These include the strength and vibrancy of our faith communities, the integrity of the family, the sanctity of life and fidelity to the United States Constitution.

For nearly a century, liberals have attempted to strike down these foundational principles. Just five days before he was first elected president, Barack Obama announced that he was committed to “fundamentally transforming the United States of America.”

Almost 11 years later, Obama’s bold and sweeping vision has been actualized. Traditions thousands of years old have been turned upside down, including the definition of marriage and the recognition of two distinct genders, to name just two sweeping cultural changes of the last decade.

I realize we live in a pluralistic society and we must always treat one another with dignity and respect. But we live in a world where the cultural elites think you’re a bigot if you disagree with them on same-sex marriage, if you believe that gender is a matter of biology and not preference, and if you oppose explicit lessons about human sexuality for very young students.

If you believe children should have the right to read the Bible and pray during their free time in school you’re considered a narrow-minded religious fanatic who hates anyone who disagrees with you.

I have lots of liberal friends, and I don’t actually believe those on the left want to kill those of us on the right, or vice versa. But I do believe many on the so-called “tolerant” left want to see many of our most deeply cherished values – often rooted in our belief in God and the Bible – hunted down and gutted, their bones buried and forgotten.


In the end, those of us with a religious, conservative worldview welcome a civil, respectful and spirited debate with those on the other side, believing that our principles and values will lead to a flourishing and more prosperous world.

The cancelation of the release of “The Hunt” is a step in the right direction. We must all live and work with those we disagree with and try to understand their point of view. Letting our disagreements escalate into violent attacks on one another is neither acceptable nor entertaining.