A New Zealand news anchor fired back at a viewer who she said has repeatedly complained about her traditional face tattoos.
Oriini Kaipara, who co-hosts the political current affairs show “Newshub Nation,” shut down the remarks from a viewer who she said emailed her and described her tattoos as “offensive and aggressive looking” and a “bad look.” The viewer’s comments come after Kaipara made history last year as the first person with a moko kauae, a cultural tattoo worn by Māori women, to anchor a prime-time news program.
“Please refrain from complaining further, and restrain your cultural ignorance and bias for another lifetime, preferably in the 1800s,” Kaipara wrote in an email to the viewer, according to a screenshot of the message posted to her Instagram stories on Wednesday.
Kaipara, who has had the tattoo on her chin since 2019, also condemned the discrimination and harassment that people with the traditional moko marking endure.
The Māori people are an Indigenous and Polynesian group in New Zealand. In Māori culture, the sacred chin tattoo symbolizes a transition from girl to adulthood.
In an email, the viewer also blasted the anchor for speaking the Māori language, which they said “we do not understand.”
Neither Kaipara nor her employer responded to requests for comment.
Kaipara said she usually does not respond directly to disrespectful comments, but wrote on Instagram, “Today, I had enough. I responded. I broke my own code and hit the send button.”