Saturday, September 8, 2012

An Open Letter to Principal Chief Baker

Dear Principal Chief Baker,

I saw your comments about Elizabeth Warren on WatchDogWire.

You said you wished everyone felt such a kinship to us. Do you understand this woman feels no kinship to us? That all this woman did was claim to be one of us for a few years in order to benefit from that claim? I know you are a busy man and have a lot of things to take care of for the Cherokee people, but that is no excuse to speak on something when you are uninformed of a situation and the details of it.

Elizabeth Warren did not just say she heard she had Cherokee ancestry. What she did was use that claim to further her career even though she had no proof of American Indian ancestry. She started claiming to be a minority in legal directories in 1986. The next year, she was hired at the University of Pennsylvania, an Ivy League school. She continued to make that minority claim for eight more years until she became a permanent hire at Harvard Law School. After that, she no longer claimed to be a minority in those legal directories, apparently to avoid the stigma of being an affirmative action hire. Though her genealogy has been done and there is no indication of Cherokee ancestry, she still refuses to acknowledge it and says she will be the first senator from Massachusetts with Native American heritage, if elected.

This woman, Elizabeth Warren, has never tried to be involved in Cherokee affairs or tried to be involved in any Native American groups. She did not make any attempt to join the group of Native American professors that mentor each other and help out tribes. She has never spoken out about Native American issues or done anything else to show she has a concern for American Indians or the Cherokee people. Not only did she refuse to meet with the Cherokee women who went to Boston to meet with her, she also refused to meet with the group of Democratic Native Americans who wanted to meet with her at the convention. She also refuses to speak to Native journalists

So, I respectfully disagree with your comment that she feels a kinship to us. She doesn’t. The only thing she ever felt about us was that we were fair game to use in her desire to further her career. She took our Cherokee identity and used it like a pretty ribbon in the hair of a little girl, proudly displaying it until she outgrew it. Then she discarded it like a piece of trash. If this is a woman you feel a kinship toward, that is your choice, but I don’t feel a kinship toward her and other Cherokees feel the same way. We feel you let us down by not standing up for us. 

Perhaps you don’t realize that this woman you feel such a kinship with has volunteers and supporters threatening us through emails and private messages on Facebook. Perhaps you don’t realize that this woman you feel such a kinship with has volunteers and supporters working very hard to intimidate us into stopping our demands that she tell the truth. And perhaps you don’t realize that this woman you feel such a kinship with has volunteers and supporters spreading vile lies about all of us, including you. Yes, even you. They said you refused to allow Indians in your furniture store before you were chief. We stood up for you and defended you when that was said. It is unfortunate you could not stand up for us, your own people, because you apparently feel more of a kinship to her than you do to us.
Those are my thoughts for today.
Thanks for reading.

copyright 2012, Polly's Granddaughter - TCB


  1. I've always felt it a sad occurrence when anyone (of any ethnicity) devalues, or allows to be devalued, his/her principles and core beliefs. I am very sad for the Cherokee Nation today. Sad ... but not ignorant. Political buy-offs have been a part of every society whose electorate fails to do its duty. I pray that others who ARE Cherokee will join you, Twila, in demanding that their leaders honor their heritage above infected politics.

  2. All Americans should be outraged by this, regardless of their heritage. Anytime we allow dishonesty and misrepresentation we further abdicate our God-given rights and authority as voters. Each time we allow the pols to lie to us or allow ourselves to be covertly seduced and coerced them, we become closer to that which provides them to have all of the authority over us in direct conflict with God's will.


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