May 24, 2012

Elizabeth Warren accuses Scott Brown of having "launched attacks on [her] family."

These "attacks" consist of the questions about her claimed Native American ancestry (and whether she has sought or received special benefits because of that). How do these questions constitute "attacks on [her] family"? Here's the quote, answering the question how she knows she is Native American:
"Because my mother told me so. This is how I live. My mother, my grandmother, my family. This is my family. Scott Brown has launched attacks on my family. I am not backing off from my family.”
So it seems the argument is: She believes something she heard from her family, and if you question the factual soundness of what she believes — or ask additional questions about the consequences of the fact believed — that you are attacking her family.

Does that make any sense? It makes a little sense to say: Hey, this is a family story, and it means a lot to us, among ourselves, and it's unkind of you to intrude into our very personal intimacies. You are attacking the cozy warmth within our home. That would make sense if it were irrelevant whether she were Native American or not. It could just be something you believe, like you believe your father loved your mother or that you were the cutest little baby in the world. You're not arrogant or a fool for believing things like that and never inquiring more deeply, and a political opponent or a reporter that gets all pushy about the factual content of such beliefs is a big clod and could be told so.

But... if you sought career advancement by making a claim that was not factually grounded, then it is relevant as you seek political office. It goes to your character, your honesty, your fairness. Now, it might nevertheless be something of an answer to the question to say: You know, I now realize that I didn't have an absolutely sound basis to believe what I believed, but I did genuinely believe it. And I know that I did expose this belief in a way that could have attracted benefits, and I did come to regret it. I've forgiven myself, and I ask you to forgive me, because my mistake was a daughter's belief in what her mother told her was true, a granddaughter's belief in her grandmother's knowledge and honor.

If she came that far, and Scott Brown were to respond: Your mother and your grandmother were either liars or fools — that would be an attack on her family.

That hasn't happened, and who can imagine it would? Thus, the inappropriate attack here is on Scott Brown, because he has not attacked her family.

89 comments:

chickelit said...

My mother told me I was supposed to be taller than 6 feet but I'm not.

drozz said...

trust...but verify.

chickelit said...

Thus, the inappropriate attack here is on Scott Brown, because he has not attacked her family.

Yes but she tried that and it failed. She's onto plan B.

ElPresidenteCastro said...

My mother told me to check every box and to never be ashamed of myself.

campy said...

Why is this campaign even going on? America's Politico has assured us Warren's a sure winner.

Aridog said...

Mz Warren cannot change her story. If she does she is admitting that she lied. To get a job at a prestigious Ivy League Law School, and at least one other law school before that. To enable same to claim her as a minority hire.

She's a twit. Caught, but , but, but ...er, "it's false, but accurate" ... uh, whatever. Just like Obama's father serving in WWII. These clowns never quit with the blarney.

Revenant said...

Scott Brown's obvious reply:

"If my mother told me that my great-grandmother's grandmother was black I would believe her. I would be proud of my ancestors for being open-minded enough to enter into an interracial marriage at a time when interracial couples were widely persecuted.

But I certainly wouldn't claim that made ME an African-American -- and I damned well wouldn't accept special benefits for it, like Ms. Warren did. To do so is an insult to the people for whom those benefits were intended."

The Drill SGT said...

She should shut up and change the subject. The voters don't like an embarassing loser and she's working hard to demonstrate she is both.

Go do something else and change the topic to Wall Street banks or something, anything else....


PS: dont go near Obama care, the war on women or the Catholic suit...

rhhardin said...

Indians are such whiners.

Amartel said...

This is the trouble in states like MA (and Cali) where the dependency culture is so in-bred that people do not exert themselves to think. Obviously this is specious reasoning. The attack was upon the false identity she sold to promote herself until it was no longer convenient. The attack was on her character, her dishonesty and hypocrisy, not her family myth.

This hysterical, screeching, lying, blue state rube teaches at Harvard Law School and is, apparently, even with Scott Brown.

kcom said...

How's that quote go again?

If the facts are against you, argue the law.

If the law is against you, argue the facts.

If you got nuthin', appeal to emotion.

Original Mike said...

"Scott Brown has launched attacks on my family. I am not backing off from my family.”

I thought Warren was supposed to be one of the smart ones.

Michael K said...

She needs a casino. Then she wouldn't care about Harvard.

edutcher said...

Somehow, I don't think that poll suddenly showing her even with brown is all that accurate.

MadisonMan said...

I notice it's her Mom and grandmother she invokes, not any male family member.

Maguro said...

Liz is about as Native American as this guy.

campy said...

I notice it's her Mom and grandmother she invokes, not any male family member.

Her male kin should be grateful she hasn't accused them of rape.

Yet.

Penny said...

It would be interesting to review census records for the maternal side of Ms. Warren's family. If Native American heritage was as important to this family as she indicates, surely we could find substantiation in census data.

Chip S. said...

Less than a month ago she argued that the attacks on her were because she's a woman.

A year ago she thought the Congress was out of line for making her answer 10 minutes' more of questions than she'd expected.

She certainly does presume to set her own terms for discussion, doesn't she?

Old Dad said...

By family lore, my great great maternal uncle was a worthless half breed horse thief who was hung.

There's no box to check for that. Damn.

Chuck said...

Double. Down.

Shanna said...

She could have stopped this at the beginning by saying that she was told this was her background and she believed it, even though it turns out not be true (as you mentioned). In addition, I think I would have said something like 'I believed this to be true when I filled out applications. I also believe that I got my jobs on the basis of merit, not my stated race." Period, done, moving on.

It's all these increasingly ridiculous comments she keeps making that are making this continue to be a story. I understand this whole 'family lore/high cheekbones' thing, because I've heard the exact same thing in my family, but I never used it to try to get anything and that's where she is at fault. It's not Scott Browns fault she was rather ludicrously named as a 'woman of color' for Harvard.

Blue@9 said...

WTF? This woman is a clown. A CLOWN.

Shanna said...

I would also accept some sort of AA is BS and she was just pulling an 'I am Spartacus' on the system, with a call to arms for others to do the sameuntil people stop discriminating on the basis of race.

But I kind of doubt that will happen.

bagoh20 said...

My mom told me I could be POTUS. I demand to have my family beliefs respected...immediately. I'll be waiting outside for the limo. Chop Chop!

AllenS said...

"Because my mother told me so. This is how I live. My mother, my grandmother, my family."

There's nothing worse than a bunch of squaws sitting around the campfire talking about crab recipes for the upcoming pow wow cookbook.

As chick said earlier, this is Plan B.

Curious George said...

I was gonna say she probably still believes in Santa Claus since her momma and her mamma's momma said he existed. But that is dumb. Injuns don't believe in Santa Claus.

Original Mike said...

"I would also accept some sort of AA is BS and she was just pulling an 'I am Spartacus' on the system..."

That would be awesome.

great unknown said...

RAAACISM!!!

X said...

this lying scrunt wanted to oversee all consumer finance in America.

Q said...

I saw a lefty here claiming that Scott Walker was "beating-up teachers".

When you use words in the enormously elastic fashion that the left does, it seems perfectly plausible to claim that pointing out that Warren is not Cherokee constitutes an "attack" on her family.

Michael K said...

My mother used to tell me that my ancestor, Elwood Mileham, was the only man that Bat Masterson was afraid of. Unfortunately, I can't dig Bat up and ask him.

She was full of these tales of famous ancestors. I suspect many families are, but you don't have to believe them.

Of course, there was no Bat Masterson scholarship waiting.

mrs whatsit said...

My husband's family has a story that one of his mother's ancestors, several generations back, was a Native American. They know the ancestor's name and even have a yellowed newspaper article with a little information about him, though it doesn't shed any light as to the supposed family connection. We all enjoy the story and would love to find out more about it some day. However, it has never crossed any of our minds to rely on this uncertain tale for some kind of advantage as our kids applied to colleges and jobs and such -- until now. Hmm. Our kids must be at least as Native American as Warren is. I wonder if one of them wants to teach at Harvard?

Amartel said...

The doubling-down is really bizarre and very typical of the entitled would-be "elites."
It's like the rest of us are obligated to accept their reality, no questions asked, because hey, the Palace Guard doesn't ask questions so why should we?
Clinton doubled-down.
Edwards doubled-down.
Obama doubles-down in his sleep.

traditionalguy said...

But IMAGINE if it were true that a crude man attacked a nearly morally perfect native American woman's family... like they did at Wounded Kneepads that was the name of Harvard's famous Battle at Tenure River?

virgil xenophon said...

What Amartel said!!!

Bob Ellison said...

Aridog, Blue@9, and others above have the right idea. It's difficult for most people to entertain the notion that Warren might just be stupid. Obama might be stupid. Pelosi, Reid,
Biden-- these people must just be stupid.

We tend to assume that people that high must be smart-- especially conservatives tend to assume that. How else could they get so high?

But Obama got to HLS even though he spent his last two years of high school "in a daze". Warren got tenure at the premiere law school even though she got her degree from Rutgers. Pelosi never heard of Constitutional challenges to Obamacare; Reid can barely speak; Biden, well, Biden.

It's challenging to think that they might just be stupid. Go for it.

AllenS said...

My great grandmother was Nebawesoyquay.

My great great grandparents were Neguanaush Nahguanaush and Aishkebuckkokooz Aishkebuckkokooz.

My great great great grandparents were Kecheshamohgunis Kecheshamohgunis and Shodoyea Shodoeay Songgogahboweak.

Notice the double spellings. I changed some of the vowels to hide my identity. Even though I'm not a tribal member, my name is on this Indian roll.

You'd think that someone with a college education could do their genealogy. No matter what she says, she's a fraud.

MadisonMan said...

You'd think that someone with a college education could do their genealogy.

Growing up, I heard all sorts of things about Mom's family -- which is very famous in Milwaukee. Why would you doubt your mom?

As it happens, I'm very interested in genealogy, and have looked into things, and they verify (that Mom had tons of old newspaper clippings and books, etc., helped). But my siblings aren't that interested, and probably just take things at face value.

I think Warren is very mockably laughable at this point -- usually fatal for a politician -- but I don't think you can throw stones at her for not looking into geneaology because she has a college education; she might just not have cared (except insofar as it helped her career).

drozz said...

she had the simplest way out, too.

"i was taught growing up that i was cherokee. i trusted the words of my family.

now that it has been shown that i am not cherokee, i sincerely apologize to all those yada yada yada"

the problem would be over right then and there.

but no. warren's braintrust came up with this losing strategy.

AllenS said...

MadisonMan said...
Growing up, I heard all sorts of things about Mom's family -- which is very famous in Milwaukee. Why would you doubt your mom

Back in the early 1980s, I asked my dad where we (insert land name) came from originally. He said Massachusetts. After I did the genealogy stuff, his great grandfather left England in 1851 and immigrated to Canada, then immigrated to Minnesota in 1875.

The Drill SGT said...

Penny said...
It would be interesting to review census records for the maternal side of Ms. Warren's family. If Native American heritage was as important to this family as she indicates, surely we could find substantiation in census data.


apparently according to actual indians, indian geneologies are very easy since there are lots of additional tribal and government records enrolling them on the various BIA support rograms going back to the first reservations.


PS: The joke among Oki's, is that half the residents are descended from set of very prolific Cherokee Princesses

Jack Burton said...

This is all the country needs... another whiny, liberal chick in the Senate who only knows how to play the victim card as her sole skill.

AllenS said...

MadMan, if you want to play Indian, you have to carry your end of the teepee.

Mark said...

drozz is right. The smart thing would have been to have said (a lot earlier in the game) "oops, family folklore had it that we were descended from Native Americans. I don't know how that got started, but I apologize for our mistake and to anyone who might be offended or hurt by it."

Would have been classy. Now she keeps the issue open; and you know, her ancestors were on the Trail of Tears, making the tears. Meanwhile, their descendant has figured out another way of dishonoring the displaced.

Really, she's pretty stupid. And I'm starting to think despicable.

chickelit said...

Traditional Guys wrote: ...like they did at Wounded Kneepads that was the name of Harvard's famous Battle at Tenure River?

"Wounded Kneepads"-LOL!

kcom said...

"By family lore, my great great maternal uncle was a worthless half breed horse thief who was hung."

We must be related. I heard that story in my family, too.

Insufficiently Sensitive said...

“You have a family out there? Good for you. But I want to be clear: you didn't keep family records in the library the rest of us paid for; you were safe in your family because no one questioned your legends. You didn’t have to worry that competing scholars would come and seize every job you applied for, and hire someone on account of their privileged color, because of the work the rest of us did setting up that box you checked.

“Now look, you built a career and it turned into something terrific, or a great idea? God bless. Keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is you come clean when your family legends come up against the records in the archives that our taxes paid for, and when your box-checking nets you preference in hiring against competitors whose pedigrees are no less colored than yours.”

Jason (the commenter) said...

What Scott Brown is doing to Warren today, is EXACTLY the sort of thing white people did to her high-cheek boned ancestors.

campy said...

I don't know how that got started, but I apologize for our mistake

Being an entitled lefty means never having to say you're sorry.

shake-and-bake said...

There you go, granny. A whiny, hide-behind-mom's-skirt tails defense is exactly what the voters will embrace.

AllenS said...

How do you know that she had high-cheek boned ancestors, Jason? Have you seen pictures of them? The latest evidence is that there is a good possibility that Warren's ancestors were the ones rounding up the Cherokees.

America's Politico said...

I had a fantastic item to be in the WH conference call with DNC, K-street, Hill agents. We talked how to take Scott out of the picture. We told Warren's chief-of-staff to attack Scott for attacking her family. The V-POTUS will make the same argument this weekend. The message: Take the issue out by attacking Scott for attacking us in the first place.

The game is a foot. We will win MA. We will destroy Romney and his VP (be it be Portman, Ryan, or Jindal). We will take over every state in the US of A.

We own the WH till Jan. 2017. GOP cannot do nothing. It is OVER.

Alex said...

Can anyone post a quote where Scott Brown even commented on this?

Shanna said...

"By family lore, my great great maternal uncle was a worthless half breed horse thief who was hung."

Mine was a gambler. His sisters had to go get him.

In addition to that and being part Native American, I am also related to stonewall jackson.

Family lore is fun, but Harvard really shouldn't be making hiring decisions based on it!

Paddy O said...

Like her family launched attacks against the Cherokee on the Trail of Tears?

Hagar said...

This woman is just boneheadedly stupid.
Can't you law professors do something to make her shut up? She is making you all look bad; especially the female ones.

bgates said...

It's funny she should mention this, because my late grandfather - a dear, sweet man - told me shortly before he passed that he had loaned $300,000 to Elizabeth Warren and she'd repay it June 1 2012.

Mark said...

Warren: "Who iz Ted?"
Brown: "Ted's dead, baby. Ted's dead."

Eric said...

I thought Warren was supposed to be one of the smart ones.

Whatever gave you that impression? I've met paving stones that have a better grasp of economics, and she's supposed to be a bankruptcy law expert. One would think those subjects at least tangentially related.

The most insidious aspect of the discrimination she's benefited from over the years is there's no way to know if she actually belongs where she is. My guess is probably not.

David said...

I love the smell of desperation in the morning.

roesch/voltaire said...

This is the straw Indian argument from the Scott Brown camp that exists because he is grasping at straws in a tie race.

Jane said...

Even if ...

she did genuinely believe it, any rational, thinking woman would not have checked the box based on a family rumor.

This is why I try, but I don't get along very well with much of my own sex. I'm learning, however, to ask questions in a sweet, demure manner, prefaced by soothing flattery. Women get defensive and huffy if you point out fallacies in their facebook posts.

I started to work my way into a Master's degree once. I worked full time in order to afford a Saturday class. A fat chick would waltz in every week with a biggie drink from McDonald's, which I kind of envied, since I couldn't afford treats. One day the subject turned to the beauty of affirmative action. (This was a class in the Management of Libraries, so it was all about being liberal). She exclaimed: "I wouldn't BE here with a full scholarship if it weren't for the fact that I'm half Mexican and half Irish!"

That's when I quit.

Fen said...

Maybe we *do* need an affirmative action program for Stupid White Women.

I might even pay for their birth control if it was made mandatory.

Quaestor said...

Ann wrote:
I've forgiven myself...

When did this self-forgiveness come into vogue? Did Augustine of Hippo invent that idea, or is it another hippie thing?

wv: ehousi ecriso -- they're getting weirder all the time. I'm waiting for cthulhu fhtagn.

Mark said...

RV, the only thing the Brown camp has to do in this train wreck is keep stocked-up on popcorn and try not to get caught enjoying it too much.

Paul said...

Notice Liz Warren WON'T TAKE A DNA TEST to prove she is part Indian.

She used the race card to up her privileges and when it was not useful anymore she ditched it. Simple as that.

Since my Great Great Grandmother was Cajun French what does that make me? Part Indian? Part Black? Does that mean I can check off alot of boxes and they give me points?

And what boxes did Obama check off to get into Harvard? Or Occidental College? Or Harvard University or Columbia University?

Paul Zrimsek said...

"But you can't hold a whole fraternity responsible for the behavior of a few, sick twisted individuals. For if you do, then shouldn't we blame the whole fraternity system? And if the whole fraternity system is guilty, then isn't this an indictment of our educational institutions in general? I put it to you, Greg - isn't this an indictment of our entire American society? Well, you can do whatever you want to us, but we're not going to sit here and listen to you badmouth the United States of America!"

Pogo said...

The only real stupidity is that this is any real race at all.

She's obviously a liar and a moron, not a good combination for a Senator.

But it's become a job requirement, thanks to Waterwings Ted. Massachusetts, hey, you never go full retard.

Alex said...

rv - shouldn't Warren be trouncing Scott Brown in an uber-blue state?

chickelit said...

Alex said...
rv - shouldn't Warren be trouncing Scott Brown in an uber-blue state?

I thought she was according to AP.

walter said...

"woman of color"

White is a color. Run with it 'liz.

William said...

She doesn't come off as very likeable or good humored. I think if she mocked herself or her predicament, she'd have a better chance. By political standards this is a mild scandal. It should be acknowledged with a wink rather than denied with a lorgnette. She's too prim for prime time..... The libs aren't openly abandoning her, but neither are they exactly bonding with her. Compare this with the hoops of steel that Palin bonded with conservatives when she came under attack for, um, killing wolves or not reading enough.

JAL said...

My sister just discovered we had ancestors arrive on the Mayflower.

Here's the kicker -- we have ancestors who were already here when the Mayflower arrived!

One set greeted the others.

And it isn't because my mother told me so -- it's my sister and ancestry.com!!

Woohee for us. (That and 52 cents gets me senior coffee at McDonald's.)

JAL said...

I should haveplayed the race/diversity card.

We are a minority.

Too late.

wyo sis said...

American Politico
"The game is a foot."
The door is a jar
The eagle flies at midnight.

MayBee said...

Next she should pull an Elizabeth Edwards and say Brown's ashamed of his own daughters.

Synova said...

It's boring to be White you know. It's like the anti-ethnic bland award.

This is why there are so many Irish in America. If you're White it's fun and interesting to be Irish. I've often felt sorry for White people who didn't know what their family ethnicity is. I've often become irritated at being clumped "Anglo" when I'm no more "Anglo" than the black fellow who mono-lingual in English.

Everyone likes to have *interesting* family History and stories.

I've no doubt that Warren (and her family) hung on to those stories the way that so many people claim to be Irish. It's how you get to be not-boring when you're "white bread." I have no real doubt that she claimed "native american" because she thought she could and it was *interesting*.

But it was also, as so many have pointed out, a matter of resource allocation, and that resource allocation was intended for people who actually are minorities and not for those who are 32/32's European.

Nora said...

It seems that a real problem with Warren is that she is addicted to presenting herself as a victim.

DEEBEE said...

C;mon Ann, everybody is entitled to their version of truth even the Nobel committe agrees ask Rigoberta Manchu and D.P. Moynihan notwithstanding.

Craig said...

The U.S. Census of 1930 says my mother was still a boy at age 4. It says my grandfather was a minister, but his name had an extra vowel that year so it was identical to the name of a minister who developed an adult literacy program that was hugely successful in making English the lingua franca of the Philippines. My guess would be that the census enumerator added the vowel, as my dad and his sisters never used spelling to confuse their father with a famous missionary. Details from the census for genealogical purposes aren't available to the public until seventy years later. Hence details of the 1940 census didn't become available to the public until 2010.

DCS said...

Reminds me of a person in my past with whom I am no longer associated. Disputing a fact was a personal attack. "You disagree with what I said, therefore you are attacking me." Absolutely infantile.

MadisonMan said...

She's obviously a liar and a moron, not a good combination for a Senator.

What? I thought that was in the job description!

That was too easy, btw.

Rusty said...

We've managed to trace the family lineage all the way back to England to the late 1600s on my mothers side.
He was a sewage farm attendant in York.

Michael McNeil said...

“shouldn't Warren be trouncing Scott Brown in an uber-blue state?”

I thought she was according to AP.


They're even according to what I read.

Amartel said...

"She is making you all look bad; especially the female ones."

Why "especially the female ones"?
Are you somehow under the impression that men are all too honorable to 'check a box' or otherwise play the diversity game? Please. Obama also claims Indian heritage, lots of guys do. I have several "Indian" acquaintances. "500 Nations" prominently displayed (check), tapestries (check) and dream catchers (check) all hither and yon about the house, talk of the lingering effect of "genocide," (checkity-check), etc. etc. Feh. I wonder what the other 15/16ths of their ancestors would say. I wonder why they always seem to pick on the Cherokee Nation (like, why isn't anyone a Chippewa or a Naragansett or a Nez Perce?)

"It's boring to be White you know. It's like the anti-ethnic bland award."

Actually, these days, being a WASP is totally bad-ass.

Michael McNeil said...

I wonder why they always seem to pick on the Cherokee Nation (like, why isn't anyone a Chippewa or a Naragansett or a Nez Perce?)

My brother married a half-Chippewa (aka Ojibwa) woman, and thus all his kids and grandkids etc. are part Chippewa. As to why there seem to be so many Cherokees, I expect that it's at least partly because they're such a large tribe: more than 300,000 members, the largest tribe in the U.S., while there are only some 56,000 Chippewa in America (though many more live in Canada), while e.g. there are only some 2,700 Nez Perce.

Doug1 said...

Even if she was 1/32 Amerindian, or 3%, it's fundamentally dishonest to check Amerindian as one's ethnicity on college or law school applications, or law school job applications. She knew damn well the result would be a BIG diversity boost -- Amerindians are damn thin on the ground at elite law schools esp. in the East.

As well no American Indian tribe considers someone who has only 1/32 of their ancestry from former members of that tribe, to be a member.

Michael McNeil said...

As well no American Indian tribe considers someone who has only 1/32 of their ancestry from former members of that tribe, to be a member.

Not so. Bill John Baker, present Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation, is 1/32nd Cherokee.