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Trump Golf Links should be renamed to honor Native Americans from Bronx, say local activists

New York Daily News logo New York Daily News 1/13/2021 Shant Shahrigian
a gate in front of a fence: The entrance of the Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point in the Bronx, NYC © Luiz C. Ribeiro The entrance of the Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point in the Bronx, NYC

Local activists are calling for President Trump’s Bronx golf course to be renamed in the wake of Wednesday news the city is working to cancel its contracts with the Trump Organization.

They want to get the name changed from Trump Golf Links to the Lenape Links — poetic justice, they say, for a president they view as racist while honoring the American-Indian tribe that once lived in the area.

Since the golf course opened in 2015, the site — and Trump’s name in huge letters — has been one of the first things drivers see when they cross the Whitestone Bridge into the borough.

“Seeing Trump’s name does not unify my community,” community activist Marjorie Velazquez, a City Council candidate, told the Daily News. “After what happened in D.C., his name has become divisive and it has become, to some, a symbol of hate and autocracy,” she added, referencing the violent siege of the Capitol incited by Trump.

Velazquez said changing the name to Lenape Links would “honor and respect the diversity of our communities.”

Ed García Conde, author of the popular blog “Welcome2TheBronx,” called on the city to end the Trump Golf Links contract around the 2016 presidential campaign, when the real estate mogul repeatedly scapegoated immigrants on the campaign trail.

He welcomed Mayor de Blasio’s Wednesday announcement that the city will terminate all contracts with Trump, though Hizzoner said it could take months to get him out of the golf course and the Trump Organization indicated it would fight back.

“It is so insulting to have such a heavily immigrant borough as the Bronx [and] to have such a giant stamp of his name on it,” García Conde said of Trump.

He added that the course has little benefitted the borough and officials should consider converting it to open parkland.

García Conde credited Fordham professor of African-Amerian studies Mark Naison with proposing the name Lenape Links.

“There is a powerful symbolism in renaming the course that bore his name to that of an indigenous community which once lived in this area,” Naison said, adding that Fordham has started to examine ways to honor the legacy of the Lenape Nation, which was pushed out of the New York area during the colonial era.

All the activists said the Lenape Nation should be consulted on the name change, and proceeds from the golf course should go to them.

A nonprofit for the Lenape Nation of Pennsylvania did not immediately answer a request for comment.

The Trump Organization did not answer a Daily News inquiry.

The president’s son Eric Trump, who’s been running the family business, described the mayor’s Wednesday move as “political discrimination,” promising to fight.

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