Anti-independence cartoon accused of ‘profound racism’ — Analysis

An anti-independence cartoon shown in the South Pacific French territory of New Caledonia has been accused of “profound racism” and spreading “ridicule towards Pacific Islanders” in a case lodged with France’s Council of State.

Kanak and Socialist National Liberation Front (FLNKS), launched the legal submission. Presenting it to France’s highest judicial body, the group aims to block the broadcast of anti-independence cartoons run by Les Voix Du Non, a collection of anti-independence parties in the South Pacific French territory of New Caledonia.

They were accused of stealing clips “profound racism and ridicule towards Pacific Islanders, especially the [indigenous] Kanak people,”With the complaint that cartoons portray non-whites humiliatingly and degradingly.

These cartoons depict the future of New Caledonian issues, including passports and policies in health. They are criticized by those who claim they portray native people as having little to no knowledge of French and accents that make them look like them. “primitive”An integral part of “uncultivated state.”

FLNKS and an individual representative of the Polynesian community, Lueisi Waupanga, are seeking to get the court to block the broadcasts after the region’s Audiovisual High Council (CSA) refused to do so. 

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“Is this how you see us after 30 years? Common growers of yams and manioc, incapable of thinking for ourselves, generally incapable?”Waupanga stated in court filing. 

Les Voix Du Non has previously denied accusations of racism and discrimination. “no particular community was targeted”The cartoons are a result of this. “render complex matters simple through the use of colloquial language from all communities.”

The New Caledonians have been invited to vote on 12/12/2018 under the Noumea Accord. France promised to grant more power to Caledonians. In the 2018 and 2020 elections, independence was rejected by 56.7%, 53.3% and respectively.

New Caledonia lies approximately 1,200km east from Australia. France took it over in 1853. It served as a penal colony and later, nickel was mined. In 1946, it was made an overseas territory.



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