Monday, November 21, 2016

Alaskans vow pushback if Trump targets mountain's new name

Among Donald Trump's many promises on his way to the White House was a tweeted vow to change the new name of North America's tallest mountain back to Mount McKinley. The Obama administration renamed the Alaska peak Denali in a symbolic gesture to Alaska Natives ahead of the president's visit to the state last year. Alaskans long have informally called the mountain Denali — "the great one" in Athabascan. But the federal government recognized the name invoking the 25th president, William McKinley, who was born in Ohio and assassinated early in his second term. McKinley never set foot in Alaska. In his tweet, Trump called the name switch a "great insult to Ohio." But if he indeed moves to undo it, Trump can expect pushback from Alaskans. "We wanted that change for a long time, and now we finally have it, and we need to leave it alone," said Victor Joseph, president of Tanana Chiefs Conference, a consortium of 42 Athabascan tribes in Interior Alaska. The organization spent years advocating for what they consider the 20,310-foot peak's original name. "It was an insult to the first people of this land when they took away the name and gave it to somebody else," Joseph said...more

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