Sure, thousands of years of culture might have been snuffed out with colonialist expansion, but aboriginal groups around the globe have spent decades trying to reclaim what they can of a history that has been fractured and lost — in New Zealand one such indigenous group even took the time to meet with members of the UK and Commonwealth royal family upon a recent visit. But, alas, the story of a conquered people’s long road toward actualization in the modern world and peaceful meeting with modern representatives of their acquisition isn’t the story.
Nope, there was a butt.
To truly understand the scope of the racism and flippancy around this meeting you have to watch the video by CNN where the commentator fixates on a part of a man’s body before going on to make fun of various world leaders who have taken the time and innitiative to connect with other groups on their terms. Hilarious.
Of course there is always room for cheeky news and a side-eyed view of current events — most telling is the Maori’s total disregard for what might be considered proper for Princes and Dutchesses, it is possible they’re getting a good laugh out of the coverage — but to have your culture mocked simply because you don’t adhere to Victorian shamefulness around showing your bum can also be quite hurtful.
What stings the most is the shocking omission of the story that could have been told here.
The story could have been one of redemption for the royals, one of forgiveness from the New Zealand tribesmen, one of the meeting of old and new, north and south in the 21st century.
But no, there was a butt.