Eric Trump Doesn't Get Why His Dad's "Pocahontas" Jab Was Offensive

Photo: John Locher/AP/REX/Shutterstock.

Someone should probably pull Eric Trump aside and explain to him why the way his dad uses "Pocahontas" as a mocking term is insulting to Native Americans, because he just doesn't get it.

On Tuesday, the 33-year-old came out in defense of President Trump, who managed to squeeze a "Pocahontas" jab at Sen. Elizabeth Warren — once again. This time, however, POTUS did so while meeting a group of Navajo veterans on Monday (and during Native American Heritage Month, no less).

Eric took to Twitter to criticize ABC News reporter Jon Karl, who asked during Monday's White House press briefing why the president felt the need to say “something that is offensive to many people while honoring the Navajo code talkers, these genuine American heroes?”

Eric tweeted: "The irony of an ABC reporter (whose parent company Disney has profited nearly half a billion dollars on the movie “Pocahontas”) inferring that the name is “offensive” is truly staggering to me."

The issue is that, unlike Eric's grand conclusion, the name "Pocahontas" by itself is not offensive. It's the context in which the president uses it to mock Warren's self-proclaimed heritage. "We regret that the President's use of the name Pocahontas as a slur to insult a political adversary is overshadowing the true purpose of today's White House ceremony," Jefferson Keel, president of the National Congress of American Indians, said in a statement Monday.

The 1995 Disney film, on the other hand, celebrates a historical figure (though it does present a sanitized version of western colonialism and it's riddled with historical inaccuracies, which many Native peoples believe is harmful.)

The Trump son is not the only one who doesn't get it, however. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders defended the president's remarks, saying "Pocahontas" is not a racial slur.

“I think what most people find offensive is Sen. Warren lying about her heritage to advance her career," Sanders told reporters.

But even if Warren is lying about her heritage, which has been an ongoing debate since 2012, that doesn't excuse the use of the culturally insensitive term — particularly since Native Americans have said over and over and over again that it's derogatory. Maybe President Trump and those in his circle should start listening.

Refinery29 reached out to Disney for comment. We will update this story if we hear back.

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