In yet another super classy mood from the classiest of presidents, Donald Trump evoked the Trail of Tears in a sarcastic tweet about Senator Elizabeth Warren’s decision to enter the 2020 presidential race. Not only did he once again refer to her as Pocahontas, the young Native American girl who was abducted, raped, and forced to marry a British colonizer, he made a clear crack about one of the worse examples of the horrific way Native Americans were treated during the invasion and colonization of their land.
Today Elizabeth Warren, sometimes referred to by me as Pocahontas, joined the race for President. Will she run as our first Native American presidential candidate, or has she decided that after 32 years, this is not playing so well anymore? See you on the campaign TRAIL, Liz!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 9, 2019
Trump puts the word “trail” in all capital letters. Since the rest of the tweet was filled with “jokes” about the controversy around Warren’s previously claimed Native American heritage, one can only assume that this is a reference to the Trail of Tears. This particular “trail” is known as one of the worst atrocities in the history of the U.S. and a key part of an ongoing genocide that many of the remaining Native American tribes feel is still going on today.
A genocidal series of forced relocations in which many Native Americans died of disease, hunger, and/or exhaustion while the survivors were raped and abused along the way is absolutely 100% not appropriate to joke about. Doing so to take a jab at an opponent is the opposite of presidential.
To make things even worse, Donald Trump Jr. was caught praising a somehow even worse “joke” made by a man who goes by the name Michael Malice. Malice, who is a regular guest on Fox News and Tucker Carlson Tonight and is a columnist at a publication that was owned by Jared Kushner until he had to sell it (to a family trust) to work for President Trump, decided to brush aside any doubt about the intent of the original tweet.
The Native American genocide continues with another murder by the president— Michael Malice (@michaelmalice) February 9, 2019
In response to such a sickening “joke,” Donald Trump Jr. posted a screenshot of the interaction with by racistly praising both Malice and Trump: “Savage!! Love my President.” Savage, of course, is often used as a slur against Native Americans. Whether this was intentional on Don Jr.’s part or just a horrible mistake is unclear.
oh my god pic.twitter.com/Rz6TqIxBgo— Ashley Feinberg (@ashleyfeinberg) February 9, 2019
Dear Donald Trump, his family, and everyone associated with said family. This is what we think of you:
It's a shame that other people in the world have had heart attacks and you have not.— Daddy loves Foggy. Does Froggy Love Daddy? (@RyanmEft) February 10, 2019
Every day you destroy the dignity of the Presidency with your crass name-calling bullying. Today is no different. Except for your shrinking celebrity worshipping aggressively ignorant base, Americans are disgusted, ashamed and waiting for 2020 to vote you out. #BeBestNot— bibliojoan 📚📖🌎 (@bibliojoan) February 10, 2019
Poking fun at a nation that had a treaty violated and was forced to march across the country and suffer horrible atrocities along the way. You, sir, are a disgusting human being. I look forward to seeing you lose in 2020 so we can have an actual President deserving of the title— Teagan (@LadyCentrist) February 10, 2019
Trump is one of the most racist presidents we've ever had & he doesn't even own slaves. You'd think it'd be hard to break into the Top 10 if you didn't own people or slaughter Native Americans but he somehow manages it. https://t.co/fYkej6RAux— Stephen Robinson (@SER1897) February 9, 2019
Trump is a racist who very predictably and despicably always calls Senator Warren “Pocahontas.” He pokes fun at the brutal massacre at Wounded Knee and encourages other Republicans to follow suit with very racist attacks that hurt Native Americans who have suffered so much.— Eugene Gu, MD (@eugenegu) February 9, 2019
Oh look, there he is, the man that cries PRESIDENTIAL HARASSMENT.— karen (@krashe848) February 10, 2019
Look at what he's doing. He's harassing someone. He's using a racist nickname, too.
Oh how ironic. The boy that cries harassment is harassing someone. The boy is the president. Roll my eyes. 😒
Not Funny, Just Cruel: Trump evoking the "Trail of Tears" where thousands of Native Americans died as we forced them off their land & pushed them west. Note: Last month he shut down crucial services on reservations & last elections Republicans tried to block voting for NA in ND.— David Rothschild (@DavMicRot) February 9, 2019
Is this a pun about the Trail of Tears during which Native Americans were forcibly removed from their land and thousands died while White men looted their homes?— Amanda Guinzburg (@Guinz) February 9, 2019
God, you're awful.
One of your leading campaign surrogates spent the last 48 hours trying to walk back her pro-Hitler comments, and here you are making genocide jokes.— the Both Sides seer (@pharmasean) February 10, 2019
You will be remembered as an orange skid mark on the underwear of history.— Rick Meslin (@mez5555) February 10, 2019
This rises to the level of censure, no? The last and only president censured, ironically, was Andrew Jackson— (((Sam Greenspan))) (@swagspan) February 9, 2019
So the right is on the “making light of genocide” kick— F1agg Σagl3t0n 🇺🇸🦅 (@NM_Che56) February 9, 2019
I honestly am going to take a day off work to celebrate when he is indicted.— Laura Bogart (@LDBogart) February 10, 2019
Just don't call them deplorable, because that would be stepping over the line.— Steve MacNeil (@SCMacNeil) February 10, 2019
I have nothing to say here that won’t catch me a visit from the secret service— Sir, Sir? SIR!! (@bornwithatail_) February 10, 2019
Of all the indictments there have been and will be, his will be the most sweet.— Armashuvitz (@armashuvitz) February 10, 2019
Unlikely that they will meet in 2020 election, although she might visit him in prison before then.— Rick Gregory (@GbgRick) February 10, 2019
Remember this tomorrow when the mouthpieces of these openly genocidal sociopaths get equal time on all the Sunday shows. https://t.co/vPF91UwFPQ— Jeanne Kozelek (@The_Kozelek) February 10, 2019
Every Trump is pure unadulterated sub-human garbage. I hope time is almost up for Dump Jr.— Resist 🌳 Persist (@GiselleAlbrech2) February 10, 2019
Open to see his repulsive comment. https://t.co/lXCiP9KWpU
If it weren’t for the constant out-of-control-fire-hose spray of bigotry from Trump and his fans, we might be able to have a decent discussion about the issues inherent in people who appear to be very white claiming Native American heritage, possibly for points. But no. We can’t even have that.