ALBUQUERQUE, NM — A local Navajo artist who doesn’t like Donald Trump’s “Make America Great Again” caps is now selling a Native American version.
Vanessa Bowen told ABC News she has designed and produced “Make America Native Again” hats as a way of starting a conversation about the problematic history behind Donald Trump’s presidential campaign slogan — “Make America Great Again” — and to raise awareness for marginalized indigenous peoples in the U.S.
“When Donald Trump says, ‘Make America Great Again,’ what time period is he talking about?” Bowen, 31, said. “A lot of people overlook that America’s history has been built upon injustice against other racial groups, including Native American people.”
Bowen explained that making “America native again” means learning and respecting Native American values and culture that have been largely erased and disrespected by colonialism.
She had a small batch of 20 caps made in Albuquerque after a half-dozen friends said they would be interested in wearing the hats.
People started to share pictures of the item on social media and the rest of the stock sold in just a couple of days.
And though Bowen said she’s received backlash in the form of several “hateful” messages online filled with “ignorant stereotypes about Native Americans,” she said she isn’t discouraged.