Politics

Sioux Leader To Trump: ‘Leave The Office You Bought And Take Your Swamp Things With You’

A Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe leader issued a damning response Wednesday to President Donald Trump’s “Pocahontas” slur earlier this week during an event meant to honor Navajo Code Talkers.

Harold Frazier, chairman of the South Dakota-based tribe, said he was “deeply ashamed” of Trump’s “disgusting” treatment of the World War II veterans and appeared to suggest that the president should resign.

“The President of the United States had an opportunity to honor veterans and bridge gaps in the relationship Tribes have with the Federal government,” Frazier said in a statement sent to HuffPost. “Instead, he chose to disgrace himself, his position and the nation he represents.”

Frazier continued, “The President of the United States wanted to utilize an opportunity to honor native warriors who defended this land to make a political attack. I have one for him, leave the office you bought and take your swamp things with you.”

For many Native Americans, Trump’s racist remark was a reminder of the trauma they have faced since European colonization began in the 1600s.

“We have been forced to learn the way of the American life,” Frazier said. “We have learned American religions, language, economy, politics and society. … The President’s comments are another reminder that we are not allowed to participate.”

Frazier also pointed out that sexual assault and abuse, much like the violence that the real Pocahontas endured, affect Native American women at staggering rates.

“What happened to Pocahontas is still happening today to our women,” Frazier said. “Native American women continue to be victims of rape and exploitation by white men. The President of the United States is practicing that by exploiting native women as an insult for political machismo.”

Trump hasn’t addressed the outpouring of condemnation he’s received from Native American leaders and U.S. lawmakers since Monday.

Read Frazier’s full statement below:

I am deeply ashamed of the way the President of the United States has treated the veterans during an honoring ceremony at the White House. Veterans are brave heroes who sacrificed everything, despite the historical trauma to tribal nations, when asked to defend the United States. Absolutely nothing should have taken away from honoring the veterans for their contributions to the war that ensured the American way of life.

The President of the United States had an opportunity to honor veterans and bridge gaps in the relationship Tribes have with the Federal government. Instead, he chose to disgrace himself, his position and the nation he represents. It has been more than 200 years of living together yet the President of the United States knows nothing about us. We have been forced to learn the way of the American life. We have learned American religions, language, economy, politics and society. We all share in following the American dream of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. A dream that all of those things we learn about, try to keep us from achieving. The President’s comments are another reminder that we are not allowed to participate.

Pocahontas was only a child when she became a victim of rape, kidnapping, imprisonment, and her forced conversion to Christianity. What happened to Pocahontas is still happening today to our women. Native American women continue to be victims of rape and exploitation by white men. The President of the United States is practicing that by exploiting native women as an insult for political machismo. Pocahontas is beloved by native people and is recognized as a victim of European colonialism. To use her name in that manner is disgusting and reflective of the President of the United States’ ignorance.

This President of the United States does not deserve to represent the American people if he cannot acknowledge the contributions of the people who make America great. The President of the United States has shown no responsibility when caring for American resources or the people. An apology is in order for the warriors that were present, to the native nations and the United States for his behavior. The President of the United States wanted to utilize an opportunity to honor native warriors who defended this land to make a political attack. I have one for him, leave the office you bought and take your swamp things with you.

 

Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/

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