From the Back of the Bus
Published October 8, 2016
WASHINGTON — According to data released by the U.S. Department of Justice, American Indian and Alaska Women are more than 2.5 times likely to be raped or sexually assaulted than women in the general population in the United States.
One in three Native women will be raped during their lifetime.
With Friday’s release of lewd remarks by Donald Trump, captured on tape in 2005 while riding in the back of an “Access Hollywood” bus, making lewd and vulgar comments about women, Native News Online asked some Native women for comments about the Republican Party nominee’s comments.
Red Dawn Foster
“As an American Indian , I was fearful of a Trump presidency before the release of Friday’s video because of his views of Natives. After seeing the video, as a Native woman, I know we need to work very hard to make sure Trump never becomes president. The video clearly demonstrates Trump is a complete misogynistic. This country deserves a much more honorable person as its president than Trump,” said Red Dawn Foster (Oglala Lakota/Diné), candidate for state representative in South Dakota in the 27th district.
“While in Philadelphia during the DNC, I sat across from a 9-year-old girl and her mother riding the shuttle to watch Hillary accept the Democratic Nomination… I thought to myself that not only is this young girl going to witness history but how different HER reality is going going to be as a female growing up then ever before… Let’s hope that will be the case. And we as females, an Natives, as people of color are not worse off… much, much worse off. We have the power of our voice, the power of your vote. Let’s make sure we are heard. We need to get out and VOTE.”
“It’s a disgusting and premier example of what women and minorities have and should come to expect from the bigot that is Donald Trump. He is so abhorrent and ridiculous that it falls upon the Republican Party to put an end to this circus once and for all,” Nicole Willis (Confederated Tribes of Umatilla), attorney/political consultant.
Native actress, Joanelle Romero (Apache, Cheyenne and Spanish Sephardic Jew), who founded Native Women in Film & Television was a victim of sexual assault, stated:
“We cannot afford to have Trump as president of the United States of America. As a survivor of sexual assault, I can honestly say this would be the worst thing for all people, especially women. Having known these kind of men in my lifetime, violence against women is so prominent in today’s society, that as women we have to stand strong in solidarity and vote for Hillary Clinton. My heart is with Bernie, but my vote is with Hillary.”
“Trump’s characterization of sex as an act of conquest, and not consent, is incredibly concerning. Especially for Native women. Our grandmothers were the first to suffer the consequences of sex used as a form of conquest. And today, Native women are more likely to be raped, murdered, abused, and/or sexually assaulted than any other segment of the United States population. As a citizen of Cherokee Nation, I remain hopeful that the majority of my fellow Americans will reject the culture of violence that Trump promises to perpetuate,” says Mary Kathryn Nagle, Partner, Pipestem Law PC.
Mary Kathryn Nagle
Trump in statement released immediately after the release of the tape called his 2005 comments as “locker room banter, a private conversation that took place many years ago.”