Taika Waititi may be my favorite filmmaker out there in the world right now.
“Boy” changed my life.
He showed so artistically perfectly how you can show the true joys, pains, triumphs and failures of being Indigenous today without compromising, and have it be beautiful.
He also made Thor watchable, which was genuinely an impossible task.
And he put a Maori accent on an international film, and I am sure no one really even got why it was so funny.
Jojo Rabbit made me laugh and cry — I had no idea it was going to be so poignant.
It is an important film.
Basically, I love him.
And when he gave the land acknowledgment at the Oscars, I know he meant it.
Acknowledging the people of the land is a huge part of protocol for Maori people, as it is for most (if not all) Indigenous cultures.
So, when we say it, we mean it.
It is a part of who we are.
But, when he acknowledged the Tongva, Tataviam and the Chumash, were there even any of them in the room?
Were there any on stage?
Were there any getting awards that day?
Were there any working for the awards ceremony?
Were there any on the voting committees for the awards?
So, who was that land acknowledgement for?
Who are any of these fucking land acknowledgements for?
Are they even land acknowledgments anymore?
I live in liberal ass Seattle, and I see these things happen all the time. They bring up a Native in the beginning, or failing that, a different PoC or sometimes just a plain-white, and they say “We acknowledge that we are here on the unceded lands of the Coast Salish People.”
And then they break ground on their…