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1. Chief Jay Strongbow
If you watched professional wrestling in the 1970s and 1980s, you probably remember Chief Jay Strongbow, the colorfully clad practitioner of the "sleeper hold" (which knocked out its victim) and the "tomahawk chop" (exactly what it sound like). Like the Eyewitness News Team format that arose at the same time, professional wrestling sought to look like an America increasingly comfortable with ethnic pride and the country's wrestling rings quickly filled with the likes of Chief Jay, Professor Toru Tanaka, the Iron Sheik, and more.
Strongbow was born Joseph Luke Scarpa in Philadelphia and, according to The New York Times, was either 79 or 83 when he died earlier this year. Chief Jay earned his greatest victories in the ring as a tag-team champion, sometimes teaming up with his "brother" Jules Strongbow (a.k.a. Frank Hill). The Strongbow warriors even defeated Misters Fuji (a Hawaiian impersonating a Japanese) and Saito for the championship belt.
As it stands, it's far from clear that Elizabeth Warren's weak claim to native American status will have much of an effect on a tight race. One poll in June found that 70 percent of voters said it wouldn't affect their choice. More recent surveys suggest that the story has had a significant impact on her chances.
Given the oddness of the story and the unflattering light it casts on Warren, it seems unlikely that it will fade anytime before the polls close in November.
Nick Gillespie is the editor in chief of Reason.com and Reason.tv and the co-author with Matt Welch of The Declaration of Independents: How Libertarian Politics Can Fix What's Wrong With America, now out in paperback with a new foreword.