Mark Macarro is a leader in California’s American Indian community. He is serving his 14th year as tribal chairman for the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians. Mark Macarro concurrently serves on the board of governors for the National Congress of the American Indians (NCAI).
Founded in 1944, the National Congress of American Indians is the nation’s oldest organization representing the interests of American Indians and Native peoples. It advocates for beneficial policies and initiatives on a consensus basis, considering the viewpoints and concerns of tribes and tribal governments throughout the United States.
While the NCAI routinely fights against discriminatory and inflammatory conduct, it does not typically respond to name calling and inflammatory dialogue in politics. In May 2017, however, the wholly bi-partisan organization released a statement condemning particularly insensitive remarks made by the nation’s president.
President Trump used the name Pocahontas as an insult to attack Senator Elizabeth Warren, one of his political opponents. Stakeholders at the NCAI object to the use of her name as a racial slur. Pocahontas was a real American Indian, and her legacy is very important to the Pamunkey Indian Tribe in particular. The NCAI statement condemns this behavior and expresses hope that the current administration will work positively with American Indian stakeholders in the future.