Surely at age 70, Elizabeth Warren knows the difference between a lie and a mistake. Yet, when the presidential hopeful appeared before the Frank LaMere Native American Presidential Forum in Sioux City, Iowa on Monday, she apologized not for her lies but for her “mistakes.”
“Like anyone who’s been honest with themselves,” she told the crowd, “I know that I have made mistakes.” But claiming that you are a member of an Indian tribe — in her case Cherokee — to advance your career is a lie, not a mistake. She compounded the lie in 1986 by listing herself in the American Association of Law Schools’ directory of faculty as a “minority.”
Warren did acknowledge the “harm I have caused” yesterday but again failed to say what that harm was. Perhaps she was referring to the harm she inflicted on the minority candidate whose job at Harvard Law School she stole by lying about her heritage on her application.
Despite her admission earlier this year that she is not an Indian, Warren is still getting cover from the Democratic Party. At yesterday’s event, she was introduced by Rep. Deb Haaland (D-N.M.), a real Indian, who said that the continued attention on Warren’s heritage is only “feeding the president’s racism.” But how? Since Warren isn’t a “native,” how is criticizing her heritage racist?
It’s worth noting that Warren has made mistakes in addition to lies. One of those can be found in a “traditional Cherokee” recipe she submitted in 1984 to an Amerindian cookbook called “Pow Wow Chow” (which I think was also the name of an ancient Chinese emperor). The dish combines eggs, tomatoes, and crab meat. But the Cherokees were concentrated chiefly in what we know today as Kentucky and Tennessee. Where in that landlocked region did tribe members forage for crab? No matter because the recipe was picked up verbatim from the food section of the New York Times.