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The Guardians of Democracy

McCain Rips Trump’s ‘Pocahontas’ Slur: Politicizing These American Heroes Is An Insult To Their Sacrifice


McCain Rips Trump’s ‘Pocahontas’ Slur: Politicizing These American Heroes Is An Insult To Their Sacrifice

Arizona GOP Sen. John McCain fired back at President Trump’s usage of the racial slur “Pocahontas” to mock Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) during a White House event honoring Native American veterans a day earlier.

“Our nation owes a debt of gratitude to the Navajo Code Talkers, whose bravery, skill & tenacity helped secure our decisive victory over tyranny & oppression during WWII. Politicizing these genuine American heroes is an insult to their sacrifice,” McCain tweeted on Tuesday.

During the event honoring three Navajos who helped the U.S. Marine Corps develop a secret code during WWII, Trump said: “You were here long before any of us were here.”

“Although we have a representative in Congress who they say was here a long time ago. They call her Pocahontas,” he added.

Families of Navajo war veterans who were honored Monday for their work with an unbreakable code that helped the U.S. win World War II told ABC News that they were dumbfounded that the president used the event to take a political jab at a Massachusetts senator.

“It was uncalled for,” said Marty Thompson, whose great uncle was a Navajo code talker. “He can say what he wants when he’s out doing his presidential business among his people, but when it comes to honoring veterans or any kind of people, he needs to grow up and quit saying things like that.”

The Navajo Nation suggested Trump’s remark Monday was an example of “cultural insensitivity” and resolved to stay out of the “ongoing feud between the senator and President Trump.”

“All tribal nations still battle insensitive references to our people. The prejudice that Native American people face is an unfortunate historical legacy,” Navajo Nation President Russell Begaye said in a statement.

Still, Begaye and relatives of Navajo code talkers said they’re honored the story of the men recruited from the vast Southwest reservation to become Marines could be told on a national stage. Peter MacDonald, a former Navajo chairman and trained code talker who stood beside Trump, also took the opportunity to ask for support for a Navajo code talker museum. Trump obliged.


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