Letter calling Jacinda Ardern a 'crazy girlfriend' sparks outrage

A letter to the editor calling Jacinda Ardern a "crazy girlfriend" has caused outrage on social media.
A letter to the editor calling Jacinda Ardern a "crazy girlfriend" has caused outrage on social media. Photo credit: Getty

A 2016 young farmer of the year finalist has compared the Labour Party to a "crazy girlfriend" in a letter to the editor.

The letter by Pete Fitz-Herbert from Hunterville was published in the September 18 edition of NZ Farmer magazine.

In the letter, Mr Fitz-Herbert tells readers to "think of the Government like a girlfriend".

"Don't choose a new good looking girlfriend and complain in three months' time that she has stopped smiling, put up the bitch curtains".

Labour leader Jacinda Ardern, who replaced Andrew Little seven weeks before the election and is the party's first female leader since Helen Clark, has drawn attention for her omnipresent smile.

"I struggle to muster a facial expression that isn't a smile", she said in her election night speech.

Her appointment ignited a nationwide burst of political engagement dubbed 'Jacindamania'.

Mr Fitz-Herbert urged readers to "see through the shiny, bright, sparkly new option to see the real cray cray, no makeup option that we might have to wake up next to for the next three years".

He also alluded to the Green Party as a "weird friend that doesn't shower regularly or shave her armpits and who is having input into your relationship".

"Looks will fade but crazy is forever", he concludes.

The letter provoked outrage on social media. Lizzie Marvelly shared the letter on Twitter, advising any of Mr Fitz-Herbert's potential girlfriends to "run fast". 

The letter is currently featured on the front page of Reddit NZ, where one commenter called it "misogynistic bollocks".

Labour spokesperson for Women's Affairs Ruth Dyson said the letter was "not worth commenting on".

Mr Fitz-Herbert told Newshub he stands by his comments, but he "never intended to be sexist".

"We don't elect just a Prime Minister, we elect an entire party…I wasn't necessarily going after an individual. Not just Jacinda, more Labour as a whole."

He says he intended the letter to come across as "comical and tongue-in-cheek", but he sees how some might be offended by it.

"I could have worded it totally the opposite way, from a female point of view, but it just occurred to me to do it from a male perspective."