Do you remember when Donald Trump restricted immigration and travel to the US from seven Muslim countries nearly three years ago?
Were you disturbed at the flagrant display of Islamophobia?
Did you shake your head when he named Iraq, Iran, Syria, Somalia, Sudan, Libya, and Yemen?
Or did you, on some level, think he had a point? Those countries are a hotbed for anti-Western terrorism. Trump, however misguided and offensive, is protecting the American way of life. Right?
Following the initial mourning after the Christchurch attack, did you pay attention to the voices of people of colour who shared experiences of racism without bullets and semi-automatic weapons?
Did you understand what they meant, and the role non-violent racism had in fuelling extremism?
Or did you say: No, mass murder is separate from the derogatory rhetoric directed at members of minority communities. After all, the massacre and the Australian at its centre "is not us". Right?
Comments from two of New Zealand's senior Government ministers last week reminded me of both events. Their words targeted New Zealand's Indian communities and epitomised the challenge of confronting racism in this country. Framed as disapproval for culturally-arranged marriages, they picked at the ignorance and intolerance which created space for hate crimes and terror. They showed how those attitudes are legitimised through public figures and laws. They also demonstrated how easily cultural supremacism was disguised as "Kiwi values" and "our way of life".
NZ First's Shane Jones led the discourse, premised on recent changes at Immigration New Zealand which effectively exclude permanent residents and citizens from participating in culturally-arranged marriages if their partner lives overseas.
Teuila Fuatai: Sport helps to filter body image fears
Teuila Fuatai: Cannabis reform critical for Māori men
"You always have the option of staying in your own country, marrying a lady over there, living there for two or three years then proving it's a genuine marriage", Jones told one media outlet.
Backing him was Deputy Prime Minister and NZ First leader Winston Peters. Peters highlighted policy that justified targeting individuals from cultures which considered arranged marriage normal.
It was simple, Peters told RNZ. Either you are a partner under New Zealand law, or you are not.
"It's clear as daylight: They're not partners — full stop."
For those unfamiliar with culturally-arranged marriages, the practice can feel like an affront to our beliefs. In my mind, it has always been associated with a lack of choice, education and access to resources for women involved. Signalling New Zealand's opposition to the practice is a good thing. Right?
But take a closer look at Jones' and Peters' comments and this is not the issue. Rather, they are identifying the types of people they (and their Government) want here.
Shila Nair, a senior member of migrant support service Shakti NZ, works with vulnerable Asian, African and Middle Eastern women.
She understands the violence, entrapment and abandonment that occurs in arranged marriages when the sponsoring partner, principally a male, is abusive. Despite this, Nair is clear traditions of arranged marriage differ to problems of abuse and/or forced marriage.
"First, this is an issue that concerns not just Indian communities, but those within the Indian subcontinent and outside," she said. "It will also impact communities that originate from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and even Afghanistan.
"These are collectivist cultures and in such collectivist cultures, marriages are not between two individuals alone, but the marriage is between two families and involves extended families."
Failing to acknowledge that is discriminatory, she said. Nair also pointed to changes to parent visa requirements which made it more difficult to sponsor a parent to live with you in New Zealand and disproportionately impacted the same migrant communities because of their culture, she said.
"Taking care of parents is very much obligatory. It goes back to being collectivist in nature. If you are not allowed to bring your parents here, then you and your wife and your children ... can't be part of that."
Like arranged marriage, elder care is normal in these cultures, Nair said. "And you have to be respectful of someone's culture. If the cultural practice is an age-old tradition, and people must do away with that to migrate to New Zealand than it is discriminatory," she said.
Nair, Jones and Peters have delved into the same issue New Zealand grappled with after March 15, and which divides the US. It is the acceptance of rhetoric that privileges certain groups of people over others based on culture, religion and race. Last week's loud objections to arranged marriage were merely a sideshow.
Understanding that is pertinent as extremism, terror and hate do not exist in a vacuum.