Once again, the Kardashian family has been accused of cultural appropriation.
Scott Disick, Kourtney Kardashian’s ex-husband, posted a TikTok video showing daughter Penelope, Kim Kardashian’s kids North and Saint, as well as two other friends performing a Māori war dance.
Many New Zealanders slammed the video, calling the depiction of the ceremonial haka “wildly inappropriate,” “disrespectful” and “insulting.”
The children performed a rendition of Ka Mate, a Māori haka composed by Te Rauparaha, a war leader of the Ngāti Toa tribe of the North Island of New Zealand.
All Blacks, the New Zealand national rugby union team, has performed Ka Mate at games for years.
The kids performed the sacred dance on a grand staircase, correctly pronouncing the words that accompany the war cry.
Scott captioned the video: “TikTok ya don't stop. Ain't got nothing on us!”
However, some were uncomfortable with the fact that the traditional and culturally significant song was reduced to TikTok content.
“My heritage better not be a damned TikTok dance challenge. I don't care that they've learned the real words rather than making up their own, this is sacred. STOP APPROPRIATING CULTURES,” another tweeted.
“Gurl shut up, it's appropriating culture and the Kardashians are infamous for it,” another one wrote.
“Why the f**k are the Kardashian West-Disick kids doing a haka on Scott's story? That feels wildly inappropriate?” another asked.
Others couldn't understand why an American family of Armenian descent would be performing a traditional New Zealand war dance.
“Why did I just see a video of the Kardashian kids doing the haka? What is going on?” person one asked.
However, some New Zealanders were impressed by the children's performance, and some Māori leaders defended the Kardashians, claiming that the video might help promote the culture in a positive way.
Speaking to Star News, Māori Council executive director Matthew Tukaki said: “On the one hand, it's a great thing. On the other hand, I would love to have a conversation with them about what the haka means and what motivated them to do it. It has to be done with true intent. It's not just something that's good for Instagram or social media.”
A number of Kardashian supporters maintained that the video was more of cultural appreciation than cultural appropriation or mockery.
“They pronounced most of the words better than half the people I know do,” one person wrote.
Others stated that the children were enjoying themselves, and that they shouldn’t be subjected to scrutiny or debate.
The Kardashians have not commented on the backlash.
Sources: Daily Mail