Native Nonsense Abounds With Elizabeth Warren

Let's start with part of an article by CNN and I'll follow it up with my take on it. Elizabeth Warren releases test with 'strong evidence' of ancestry

Excerpt: Sen. Elizabeth Warren has released the results of a DNA analysis showing she has distant Native American ancestry, in an apparent attempt to pre-empt further questions and attacks should she run for president in 2020. 

Warren first faced scrutiny for her purported Native American heritage during her 2012 Senate race. But President Donald Trump has revived and amplified the controversy as he eyes Warren as a possible rival, frequently mocking her with the nickname "Pocahontas." 

But Warren now has documentation to back up her family lore -- a analysis of her genetic data performed by Carlos Bustamante, a professor of genetics at Stanford and adviser to Ancestry and 23 and Me. 

In a rollout video about Warren's heritage, the Massachusetts Democrat is seen sitting behind a laptop as she calls Bustamante. 

"Now, the President likes to call my mom a liar," Warren asks him. "What do the facts say?" 

Bustamante responds, "The facts suggest that you absolutely have a Native American ancestor in your pedigree." Warren is shown nodding. 

Bustamante's full report is now posted on Warren's website, along with other supporting documents and interviews detailing her background. 

According to the report, "the great majority of (Warren's) identifiable ancestry is European." However, the report adds, "The analysis also identified 5 genetic segments as Native American in origin at high confidence." 

Bustamante's analysis places Warren's Native American ancestor between six and 10 generations ago, with the report estimating eight generations. "The identity of the sample donor, Elizabeth Warren, was not known to the analyst during the time the work was performed," the report says. 

Bottom Line: OK, so let’s be clear about what we’re talking about here. We’re talking about Elisabeth Warren using Native American ancestry to obtain preferred status when applying to law schools. The same Elisabeth Warren who according to the report is advancing of vindication is overwhelmingly "the great majority of (Warren's) identifiable ancestry is European." Not Native American. At best eight generations ago, she had an ancestor of some Native descent. 

So, here’s the question. She used her status as a “Native American” for personal benefit placing her ahead of “other” Native Americans. Who wants to raise their hand and make the case that she deserved favored status even if you apply all benefit of the doubt to this account. Was this “great majority European” someone who deserved favored status due to repression her ancestors faced? What’s more is that she stated that she specifically is Cherokee. If she’s a Cherokee Indian why can’t her expert conclude as much? Here’s the statement issued by Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr.

"Current DNA tests do not even distinguish whether a person’s ancestors were indigenous to North or South America". "Sovereign tribal nations set their own legal requirements for citizenship, and while DNA tests can be used to determine lineage, such as paternity to an individual, it is not evidence for tribal affiliation," Hoskin continued. "Using a DNA test to lay claim to any connection to the Cherokee Nation or any tribal nation, even vaguely, is inappropriate and wrong. It makes a mockery out of DNA tests and its legitimate uses while also dishonoring legitimate tribal governments and their citizens, whose ancestors are well documented and whose heritage is proven. Senator Warren is undermining tribal interests with her continued claims of tribal heritage." 

Here’s what’s as true today as the day she first filled out college apps as a “Native American”. A person with the great majority of their ancestry being European, robbing an actual Native American of the opportunities slotted for them. Elisabeth was a perpetrator then and still is to that person today.

Photo by: Win McNamee/Getty Images

 

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