UPDATE: Jeanne Moos, the CNN journalist behind a controversial news report on the welcome of British Royals to New Zealand, has apologised for any offence caused.
“Duly noted,” she said.
“I do humour and satire, and I am truly sorry if the tone of my story offended anyone.”
Her apology followed the launch of a Change.org petition saying the reporter’s “blatant disregard for, and insensitive commentary concerning, the Maori culture and its customs are inadmissible”.
The leader of the petititon, student Jay Evett, told Radio Australia that he remains unimpressed by the apology.
“Her apology was, to say the least, lacklustre,” Mr Evett said. “She didn’t actually apologise for the content of her report, rather the tone and if people took offence to her tone.”
The petition has already gathered more than 25,000 signatures.
Yesterday, Mamamia reported:
This weekend, American news network CNN came to the Culturally Insensitive Party and danced everyone else off the floor. Their coverage of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s ongoing tour of New Zealand wasn’t so much ignorant as it was downright offensive.
Take a look:
Yep. That really just happened.
Forget wearing a native American Indian headdress at music festivals, the use of traditional designs on cheap throwaway teenage clothing or even chain store fashion lines called ‘Go Native’. At least (if they’re defensible at all), these examples are thoroughly misguided attempts to appreciate religion and culture. CNN’s reporting of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s traditional greeting by Māori elders in New Zealand? It’s just out-and-out mocking.
There isn’t even a half-hearted attempt at respecting or understanding of the culturally significant ceremony being performed. Watching the video leaves the viewer with an uncomfortable sense of having been transported back to primary school; pointing and laughing at the classmate who is just a little bit different.
Now – even though it’s hard to know where to start – let’s attempt to break all this offensiveness down, shall we?
The video opens with references to a traditionally dressed Māori warrior as ‘the royal bummer’, which is terrifically funny and witty because of course the warrior’s buttocks was exposed.
But while being bare-bottomed might not be the state of dress the Duchess of Cambridge is used to being greeted in; the exposure of the warrior’s leg and buttocks tattoos is highly cogent.