Rachel Dolezal’s name went viral when the NAACP officers’ parents told major media outlets that their daughter had been posing as an African American woman. Initially, the long-term activist and teacher applied to a position on the board of the NAACP’s Spokane division and was elected. After the word got out, social media took charge and began the “AskRachel” hashtag, ambushing Dolezal with a lot of negative attention.
Although Dolezal does make a very controversial, but accurate point of the human race and cultural race constrictions in the U.S. and around the world, the issue for me is not that she identifies as “Black” and feels more [comfortable]being a part of the culture. My problem is that she lied about her ancestry and background. Nonetheless, people are saying that the media doesn’t have the facts right, so here are the facts:
Fact One: Rachel Dolezal is not of African American decent.
Fact Two: When called “African American” publicly, Rachel Dolezal did not deny it.
Fact Three: Rachel Dolezal wears a curly wig and we’re like “Huh?”
When I first read about this, I was definitely indifferent. I played devils advocate agreeing that people should be able to identify with any culture that they want, but once I thoroughly understood what was going on, I realized how problamatic it was and how many other political and social issues this will spark if we accept it. You can be a black woman without being “African American,” but you cannot choose your ethnicity.
However, there are definitely some more facts that seem to be ignored by angry media writers. She was the education director of the Human Rights Education Institute in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho until 2010 and was promoted to the institute’s top job because of her remarkable work with the program. Rachel has been a long-term activist supporting, educating and helping black communities. Her accolades and contributions to civil right’s should not be discredited because of her behavior, but it certainly brings some negative attention to her and makes us question her motives.
Personally, I have no issue with white poeple chiming in on black social movements. After all, the NAACP was founded by whites and blacks, but I do have a problem with false claims and manipulation of black culture. Black people have worked hard to gain the respect and recognition that we have today, which is why we can rightfully claim our ancestry. The falsification and misdeclaration of ones heritage is just strange. In other words, you don’t have to lie about being African American to be “down.”
Watch Dolezal’s first response after all the scrutiny: