New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern is being praised for her decisive and strong stance against white supremacy in the wake of a shooting at two mosques that killed 50 people.
Ardern’s reaction to the national tragedy, the worst mass shooting in the history of New Zealand, has been praised. From vowing to ban semi-automatic weapons, reassuring the Muslim community that they are valued members of the country, and to focusing her attention on the victims, as opposed to giving the shooter notoriety by way of extensive media coverage.
Here are five ways world leaders can follow Ardern's example in the wake of a tragedy:
1. Immediately condemn terrorism, no matter what group it comes from
It took the New Zealand prime minister less than 24 hours after the fact to condemn the tragic attack as a terrorist attack. The New Zealand prime minister said:
He is a terrorist. He is a criminal. He is an extremist. But he will, when I speak, be nameless.
The way Theresa May handled the Grenfell Fire tragedy and the way Jacinda Ardern has handled the Christchurch terro… https://t.co/7bMYWe7yfD
— John Smith (son of Harry Leslie Smith) (@John Smith (son of Harry Leslie Smith))
"U’ll never hear me mention his name. He is a terrorist
He is a criminal
He is an extremist But he’ll when I speak… https://t.co/ll6DmG928A
2. Spend time with the communities impacted by a terror attack - no matter what
Ardern was praised across the world for the way she embraced the Muslim community following the attack. She promised to cover the funeral costs of the 50 victims, spent time with families of victims and observed the hijab in order to honour the victims.
She addressed parliament using the Muslim greeting, '"As-salamu alaykum."
As-salamu alaykum, peace be upon you, and peace be upon all of us.
NZ PM Jacinda Ardern speaks to the NZ Muslim community - speaks from the heart and with great sensitivity https://t.co/lIbbpnQXVb
Jacinda has refused to speak the name of the attacker, and implored others to do the same. In a televised address, she said:
You will never hear me mention the name of the alleged Christchurch gunman. He is a terrorist. He is a criminal … To others, I implore you: Speak the names of those who were lost rather than the name of the man who took them.
Others have decided to do the same.
I’m with @jacindaardern His name will never pass my lips. I will erase him from history & give him no place in memo… https://t.co/koGfV8p92R
— Magda Szubanski AO (@Magda Szubanski AO)
Terrorists crave publicity. In the age of social media can notoriety truly be denied, asks @rick_n after New Zealan… https://t.co/eWratOM20V
Prime minister Ardern went on to say legalisation surrounding gun control “will change” and vowed to ban private ownership of semi-automatic rifles. In response, senior officials in New Zealand government also promised to introduce gun control measures in the wake of the massacre.
People have praised her decisive action and compared it to the lack there of, in America.
After a mass shooting in New Zealand, the government announced a proposed
ban on assault weapons. After dozens of m… https://t.co/PuFTYimCBe