And with good reason.
Advisers close to Ms. Warren say she has privately expressed concern that she may have damaged her relationships to Native American groups and her own standing with activists, particularly those who are racial minorities. Several outside advisers are even more worried: They say they believe a plan should be made to repair that damage, possibly including a strong statement of apology. . .
Ms. Warren has also troubled advocates of racial equality and justice, who say her attempt to document ethnicity with a DNA test gave validity to the idea that race is determined by blood — a bedrock principle for white supremacists and others who believe in racial hierarchies. Native American critics, including Kim TallBear, a prominent scholar from the University of Alberta, said in October that Ms. Warren’s actions relied on “settler-colonial” definitions of who is an indigenous American and amounted to a haughty refusal to hear out her longstanding critics.
This line of criticism has particularly stung Ms. Warren, who has made a point to hold several private talks with Native leaders since taking the DNA test, emphasizing her respect for tribal sovereignty and making clear she does not claim tribal citizenship.
Nothing is easier than Monday morning quarterbacking, but still . . . maybe she should have had those talks before going down this road, rather than afterwards.
In interviews, several left-leaning groups wondered if Ms. Warren’s decision to take the DNA test was indicative of a larger problem for several prospective presidential candidates: that their inner circles of advisers don’t reflect the racial diversity of the Democratic electorate.
Warren is almost certainly running for president, so you can expect about 3,751 more stories, give or take, about this. That’s frustrating, but on the other hand it’s example 3,751 of the kinds of problems that can arise when white people are at the head of a multi-racial coalition whose primary reason for existing at this historical moment is to defeat a white ethno-nationalist party that’s obsessed with absurdly unscientific yet extremely socially powerful ideas about race and racial purity.
Giving credence to those ideas is something progressives, and most especially white progressives, should avoid like the plague.