Donald Trump has once again enraged the indigenous people of his country.
On Monday, the President was called out by a Native American group hours after referring to Sen. Elizabeth Warren as “Pocahontas” while honoring Navajo veterans in the Oval Office.
During the address, POTUS proudly used the racial slur to reference Warren’s unverified claim that she is part Native American — an offensive swipe that was met with the laughter of literally no one.
Especially unenthused by the wise crack was the National Congress of American Indians, who used all the voices of the mountain to take the Big Turkey to task later that day.
Jefferson Keel, the organization’s president, said that the remark was not only insulting to the purpose of the meeting — to honor Native people who served in the armed forces — but also Pocahontas’ legacy.
In a statement published to its website, he explained:
“We regret that the President’s use of the name Pocahontas as a slur to insult a political adversary is overshadowing the true purpose of today’s White House ceremony. Today was about recognizing the remarkable courage and invaluable contributions of our Native code talkers. That’s who we honor today and everyday ├óΓé¼ΓÇ¥ the three code talkers present at the White House representing the 10 other elderly living code talkers who were unable to join them, and the hundreds of other code talkers from the Cherokee, Choctaw, Comanche, Lakota, Meskwaki, Mohawk, Navajo, Tlingit, and other tribes who served during World Wars I and II.”
Whoa, World Wars I and II? We might be going back a bit too far for the Dump-truck — who, let’s be honest, probably thinks Pocahontas is still alive and romantically linked to Frederick Douglass.
For the record, this isn’t the first time the group has called out Trump for using Pocahontas’ name to insult Warren. In May, the organization called him out for doing so during an NRA address.
Keel, a decorated U.S. Army officer and Vietnam War combat veteran, harped on the president’s ability to learn and/or listen in his response, adding:
“And we honor the contributions of Pocahontas, a hero to her people, the Pamunkey Indian Tribe in Virginia, who reached across uncertain boundaries and brought people together. Once again, we call upon the President to refrain from using her name in a way that denigrates her legacy.”
Other Native groups have also spoken out on Trump’s controversial remarks. John Norwood, the general secretary of the Alliance of Colonial Era Tribes, told NBC News:
“The reference is using a historic American-Indian figure as a derogatory insult and that’s an insult to all American-Indians.”
The alliance also disputed press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders‘ claims that the president’s use of the historical figure was NOT a racial slur, adding:
“The name becomes a derogatory racial reference when used as an insult. American Indian names, whether they be historic or contemporary, are not meant to be used as insults. To do so is to reduce them to racial slurs.”
Other groups aren’t taking sides in the spat. Navajo Nation President Russell Begaye said in a statement to ABC News:
“The prejudice that Native American people face is an unfortunate historical legacy. The Navajo Nation does not want to engage in this dialogue between Sen. Warren and President Trump. It was our code talkers that ensured the freedom of the United States and that’s what’s important to remember here.”
Sigh… will he ever learn? (That was rhetorical. He legitimately never will.)
[Image via C-SPAN.]