High cheek bones notwithstanding, Elizabeth Warren no longer claims she is an American Indian. This is not to say she didn’t once cling tenaciously to the myth that she was or use that information to further her career and, more recently, political ambitions. When confronted with questions regarding a 1996 Harvard Crimson piece that identified her as “Native American,” Warren pleaded ignorance. According to Politico, she insisted that “she had no idea the school where she taught law was billing her that way and saying it never came up during her hiring a year earlier, which others have backed up.” Ditto for a Fordham Law Review piece a year later that described her as Harvard Law School’s “first woman of color.”
Warren has had less to say about a pair of “traditional Cherokee” recipes she submitted in 1984 to an Amerindian cookbook called “Pow Wow Chow.” And she’s been downright mum about the fact that the recipes she submitted were picked up verbatim from the food section of the New York Times, which made no mention of their supposed Indian provenance.
In early 2019, still insisting that as a child she was bombarded with family tales of her proud Cherokee heritage, Warren reluctantly submitted to a DNA test. It showed that she was not 1/32 Cherokee or anything remotely approaching it. She issued a mea culpa beginning, “I am not a person of color; I am not a citizen of a tribe.” She also apologized directly to the Cherokee Nation for her fraudulent claims of being one of them.
All this being said, I am baffled by a statement she made in Nevada. A video and transcript follow:
I get it. I am not a woman of color. I never got thrown across the hood. I have the privilege of never having been slammed into the wall by a police officer. But I tell you this. I listen to people who have. I listen and I say, when I am president of the United States, that is not going to happen here.
The statement is clearly a shot at her newest target, Michael Bloomberg, who has taken heavy flak for comments he made several years back in which he applauded the effectiveness of the stop-and-frisk policy he implemented as New York City mayor. The statement is also a swipe at law enforcement, which in her view routinely resort to such barbarian tactics as slamming suspects who are of color into a wall.
But something here doesn’t wash. If Warren identified as a woman of color for 69 or her 70 years of life, how is it she was never subjected to police brutality of the sort she describes? Did law enforcement not notice her high cheek bones? How, for that matter, is she blithely able to utter the words “I am not a woman of color” after having lived and breathed that belief for nearly her entire life?
(h/t Weasel Zippers)