Warren talks identity in address to historically black university: 'I'm not a person of color'

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenPoll: Biden leads 2020 Democratic field by 15 points, followed by Sanders and Warren Warren introduces bill to cancel student loan debt for millions Democrats, advocacy groups urge Pompeo to abolish new 'unalienable rights' commission MORE (D-Mass.) acknowledged Friday that she is "not a person of color" in her commencement address at Morgan State University, a historically black institution.

“As a country, we need to stop pretending that the same doors open for everyone. Because they don't,” Warren said, according to The Washington Post.

“I'm not a person of color. And I haven't lived your life or experienced anything like the subtle prejudice, or more overt harm, that you may have experienced just because of the color of your skin," she added.


In her speech, Warren sought to convey that her progressive stance on issues could benefit minorities.

Warren cast herself as an ally to communities of color in what she said was a fight against “rigged” rules that work against them.

“People with power and influence rigged the rules to line their own pockets. The rules are rigged because the rich and powerful have bought and paid for too many politicians," she said. "And if we dare to ask questions, they will try to divide us. Pit white working people against black and brown working people so they won't band together and demand real change. The rich and powerful want us pointing fingers at each other so we won't notice they are getting richer and more powerful.”

Warren's speech comes as she mulls a possible 2020 presidential bid.

Her possible candidacy hit a roadblock earlier this year when she publicly released a DNA test in an effort to put to rest a years-long debate over her claims of Native American ancestry. The test infuriated some Native Americans who said the move diminished an ethnicity and identity to a genealogy test. 

Warren, the Post notes, has never sought to join a Native American tribe, but has identified as Native American previously.

Following the DNA controversy, some have cast doubt on Warren's possible presidential aspirations.

The Boston Globe’s editorial board earlier this month said Warren would be a “divisive figure” at a time when Democrats need to present a united front against Trump.