The First Lady of the United States has been accused of being a tad bit insensitive for her choice of outfit during a recent trip to Kenya.
For a brief safari, Melania chose to wear a pith helmet - a symbol of colonial rule across Africa - and this was not lost on social media users.
During Melania Trump's first solo foreign trip, critics called her out on the colonial undertones expressed in what she wore.https://t.co/aEawLQaDeV— NPR (@NPR) October 8, 2018
This was the FLOTUS' first solo trip overseas. She visited an orphanage in Nairobi then went to a national park near the city.
« The First Lady was photographed wearing a white pith helmet while on a safari in Kenya. The pith helmet was popularized in the late 19th century and favored by British officers in Africa so that it’s become at symbol of colonial rule and oppression. » https://t.co/1rMJa2LaDk— Rokhaya Diallo (@RokhayaDiallo) October 5, 2018
For this quick trip, Melania wore a pair of riding pants, boots, and a white pith helmet. She climbed aboard the open-air vehicle and took pictures of the animals she saw like zebras, giraffes, and hippos.
Melania Trump has raised eyebrows in Kenya by choosing to wear a pith helmet, which is seen as a symbol of colonialism in Africa! pic.twitter.com/BkGAl1jLgq— Sunrise (@sunriseon7) October 5, 2018
What seemed to catch people's attention was her helmet which was what the European explorers and imperial administrators once wore when they came to Africa in the 19th century. It quickly became a symbol of status and oppression.
Many took to Twitter to express their outrage at the United States First Lady.
A First Lady shall to be sensitive about how every detail impact others. There are protocol experts. The current First Lady she has demonstrated beyond doubt that she is not qualified to be an ambassador of the US.— Moises L. Bursztein (@mbursztein) October 8, 2018
Maybe she thought it looked nice with her outfit. Surely you don't think she even knows what a pith helmet is!— Debrah Ross aka Kate (@Lysastrata) October 7, 2018
Tone deaf. Seems to be a Trump family trait.— Paul Wilkis (@PaulWilkis) October 8, 2018
But what you do “Melanie” is WEAR politically incorrect clothing. Like all the time.....soooo, if you’d stop that, then we can talk, girl.— Robin Coleman (@RobinlColeman2) October 8, 2018
Your choice in wardrobe is an action if it makes a political statement like the hat and the “I really don’t care” jacket.— Tara Sloan (@sloan_tara) October 8, 2018
While Melania toured Africa, she seemed to be having a good time. She posed for photos with babies and waved at the cameras.
She also spent some quality time with the animals at the safari as well. She visited a feeding pen for orphaned elephants and gave them formula in oversized baby bottles. She patted some of them and seemed quite fascinated with the creatures.
Interestingly, she wore a pristine white shirt to hang out with the animals, and somehow, the shirt came out of the whole thing without a single stain.
Many were not really sure what the purpose of the Africa tour was but some suggested that it could have been her way of smoothening relationships after her husband, Donald Trump, said some unkind words about the continent.
Perhaps her choice of the hat was simply an error in judgment as she was probably not well-advised about people's sensitivity to the situation.
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