Sweeping generalisations are always inaccurate but I lived in America for many years and I would definitely agree that on the whole, Americans are shockingly ignorant compared to almost any other place in the world, certainly any other place I have lived. Because it is so big, and relatively homogeneous (yes, it is in the ways that matter), America tends towards insularity. In general, people there are very inward-looking and not particularly interested in, or knowledgeable about, the rest of the world. This is reflected by their domestic news media, which just regurgitate what people already think and want to hear. There are exceptions, of such, such as the generally excellent PBS news, but this only appeals to a tiny minority.
This is my impression based on many years of actual experience living amongst Americans. If anyone wants links, look them up yourselves. I am simply reporting my subjective experience.
I will get flamed for saying this, but I have lived in NZ for a lot of years and I have discovered there are a LOT of ignorant NZers as well. Shock horror!!
I tried to run a few over yesterday on Waterloo Quay that were lying in the middle of the road with a maori flag...WTF. Sure its fine to protest but why bring Wellington to its knees over what....
Also in NZ surprise surprise there are a minority of people that insist on forcing their views down our throats cause the majority is always wrong. Guess I am guilty of that at times.
Sometimes we all need to take a look in the mirror to see who is being ignorant.
I know and have worked with a lot of Americans and they are fine people.
Folks have a right to protest and protest should be encouraged as it is a key element of democracy, however those protestors went too far and probably lost support because of it. Thankfully family members were able to attend the conference safely. What I don't understand from your post is what has the Tino Rangatiratanga Flag have to do with it?
Because people lying down in the middle of the road had it swing about their body. You tell me my? Paid protesters? There was many of these flags flying from protesters on the Quay, which I didnt mind, as that wasnt doing any harm.