If Rachel Dolezal wants to embrace black culture...
...and borrow from it as a way to define herself, I don't understand what the problem is. People have been "passing" as one race over another for eons.
Consider the 70s "Crying Indian Chief" commercial with the tearful "Native American" guy who turned out to be Italian. He claimed to be of Cherokee-Cree descent and maintained the illusion throughout his adult life.
Carol Channing passed as white so as not to hurt her career as an actress. She finally outed herself when she was 81 by admitting that her father had been half black.
What about Michael Jackson? He tried desperately to convince the world (and himself) that he had white skin. Mariah Carey pushed her multiracial ethnicity early in her carrier. So did Tiger Woods. People appear to fashion identities that make them feel comfortable in their own skin.
Rachel Dolezal has been immersed in black culture for most of her life. She had African American siblings by way of adoption and she was, at one time, married to a black man. She also, apparently, parented at least one of her black siblings for a time.
The "one drop" rule and the fact that we all share a common African ancestry should buttress her right to explore African culture if she so chooses, but I think it goes deeper than that. She has attempted to walk the walk while consistently advocating on behalf of the African American community. Everything that Rachel Dolezal has stood for and worked for in her adult life, has been in the interest of defending and honoring black culture.
Berating someone because of their skin color, in this day and age, seems backward and counterintuitive. People are willing to attack her for attempting to wear a 'black' hairstyle but say nothing when Beyonce wears a straight blonde wig. They both should be able to wear their hair in any style that makes them happy.
As an actual multiracial person, by way of her Czech, Swedish, German and Native American roots, she should be allowed to self-identify in any way she chooses. How she rolls is no threat to anyone else's blackness or whiteness. She genuinely appreciates and loves African American people and black culture. She's worked tirelessly for racial equality, civil rights and an end to racism and police brutality.
The NAACP supports her multiracial identity and so do I.
I'm Danish, English, Irish, Scottish and a little bit Cherokee, according to my grandmother.
When asked, I say I'm Danish.
Will help you understand what the problem is.
one that is key to allyship ... "we must work in conjunction with people of color to overturn the system that bestows those privileges. But the key word is WITH people of color, ..." ... and the "with" connotes an equality, that so many liberals refuse to acknowledge.
I believe she immersed herself in black culture because she had black siblings and, at one time, a black husband. She stretched the truth so as to establish herself firmly among her network of family and friends without being ostracized.
According to the article that you linked to, Rachel Dolezal likely did what she did because she wanted to fit in. She lied because she wanted to be accepted by black people without being questioned about her motives or doing the hard work to become an ally.
My thought is this:
If being an ally to Black America is becoming more difficult than surviving Rush Week at the local sorority or fraternity you're going to lose a lot of allies.
I'm gay and I'll take all the straight allies I can get. If they choose to lie to me about all of the "tons of amazing gay sex" they're having, while co-opting a gay hairstyle and metrosexual fashion more power to them. I say, "Welcome, my new gay compatriots."
Rachel Dolezal has been a good friend and an ally to the African American community. I find it hard to believe that she's being treated like the enemy.
So much as a discovered deceiver ... and as such, as someone to be watched.
Honestly, I find it hard to believe that you would welcome someone who decever you into the leadership of LGBT causes.
I would prefer actual gay people to be in positions of leadership in the gay community. That said, I would not throw a straight ally under the bus for deceiving me, unless that person's intent was to do harm to me or the gay community.
I don't believe that Rachel Dolezal's intent was to do harm to the African American community.
I do not believe her intent was to do harm to the Black community ... rather, I think her intent was to speak FOR the Black community ... and she knew that she couldn't do that as a white woman.
the chorus. Her fraudulent claims about being the target of hate crimes strikes me as attention seeking of the sort found in Munchausen syndrome (not the proxy kind), in which individuals "feign disease, illness, or psychological trauma to draw attention, sympathy, or reassurance to themselves." (Yes, I know Wikipedia isn't a "proper" source, but I don't intend this as an academic citation, but only as an adequate lay definition, which it is.)
The masquerade and all the lies that were necessary to perpetuate it is what is off putting. I look forward to seeing her address it.
that she made?
She has not helped anyone of any race.
She is not black, and she cannot claim to know what life is like for a black person in this country.
Every time she makes these allegations, police have to investigate. None of the allegations resulted in any arrests or prosecutions.
Such as trying to pass a black man as her bio dad, while her bio dad is a different, white man (who has been married to her bio mom for 41 years).
"And she has presented the public with a different family photograph posted to the local NAACP chapter's Facebook page. When she announced her father was coming to town for a visit, she showed herself standing next to an older African-American man."
...by doing that? She obviously doesn't get along with her real parents and who can blame her. What they've done to her is despicable. I'd disown them too.
If you want to disown your own, go right ahead.
What exactly did her parents do to her, except set the record straight? Should they have lied to cover up for her stories?
Her dad is the bio dad. He had been married to her bio mom for 41 years (years before she was born). She claimed in her stories he was a step dad.
How would that be possible, unless she is implying her mother cheated on him?
Should the parents have gone along with her claims?
...in trying to publicly tear her down. And, they're succeeding.
She did, by claiming some other guy was her real father.
...who started it or how the media suddenly became so interested in Rachel Dolezal. Their family is in the middle of a lawsuit that's apparently just now coming to a head.
Read more at http://m.snopes.com/2015/06/12/rachel-dolezal/#71xkFoebwY2rDToh.99
Even if I was estranged from my adult children, (which I am not and I have three of them) I would not feel I owe any members of the press who came around asking me questions about my child, any kind of explanation. It seems that the parents outed her to the press. What could they have hoped to gain from doing so, and why did they feel they needed to. Family problems aired in public never won over anyone to the other's side. As the parent, if they thought their daughter had 'issues' why air her 'issues' to the public. Instead take the high ground, and allow your child some breathing room and hope that she would come around. Only in White America, could your child pretending to be black be the worse thing in the world to happen to you and her. Let's see: Pregnant and unwed? No. High School dropout? No. Drug addict? No. Unemployed and Homeless? No. No., Career Criminal? No. Pretending to be black when she's white? OH MY GOD??????
These parent were supposed to me members of a religious organization. Served as missionairies for the church? Where is their sense of compassion, forgiveness, privacy?
Just my opinion but these "parents" just wanted to destroy her. Shows me that the issues this lady may have that drove her need to create a new identity for herself may have been caused by having hateful assholes as parents. I have thought they were mean from the start of this. I am not excusing someone creating a life of lies, but having shitty parents doesn't help one's decision making skills.
you're going on her word for this, and given her track record for lying, I don't for one second believe anything coming out of her mouth.
They aren't saints just because people hate their daughter, they outed their own daughter, for some reason her adopted brothers came to live with her, and they are complete fundamentalists. That doesn't add up to a fun household.
Should they have lied?
Ruthanne Dolezal said the familys ancestry is Czech, Swedish and German. She said the family does have some faint traces of Native American heritage as well. She provided a copy of her daughters Montana birth certificate listing herself and Larry Dolezal as Rachels parents.
...may have contacted them about the pending lawsuit. I don't think they should have used it as an opportunity to tear down their daughter. It seems like they may be trying to shift the focus away from themselves.
Maybe they're trying to clear their name of some of the ugly lies she's told over the years?
She's the liar and I cannot fathom why you're trying to excuse her lies.
I'm defending her because I'm not comfortable with the social media internet pile on.
I imagine it will all come out now, if and when they go to trial.
No way I would have done what they did under these circumstances. I can't imagine my own parents doing that to me.
But a parent who would do this makes me think something is off.
but then those of us with a certain type of dysfunctional family can usually smell this kind of thing a mile away.
If I felt like people were being hurt or taken advantage of or that something were just plain wrong (as I feel was the case here) I would privately contact those people, but I can't imagine talking to the press. If she has issues with emotional stability, I shudder to think where this is taking her. What parent puts their own kid in that place, even if their kid is wrong?
or lying about being whipped like a slave by a baboon whip, or lying about living in S. Africa.
More important to do that then stand by your own daughter and make sure she gets any help she needs!
I stand by everything I say. Something is not right about her parents.
and it probably contributed to what she did, maybe to a great extent.
Some of what she said, if it's an all-out lie, could be slander. However, it isn't necessarily all 100% a lie. There might have been some abuse in her family. The situation is weird enough that it seems like something could have been going on.
And if the NACCP is okay with her, I really don't understand why anyone else should have a problem with her. And there were no problems till this media stunt with her parents.
they postponed the meeting, they're probably working out the details of her resignation.
that was then, this is now, I can imagine that they're working out the terms of her separation package and resignation.
What? Did you think they would say something else?
Do you think they suddenly empathize with the parents who wanted to set the record straight that they're white? I highly doubt it.
the police have suspended their investigation of her claims of hate mail in the NAACP mail box, she's now under investigation by the city for her role in the police oversight board she was on.
The City of Spokane announced Thursday it's investigating whether the president of the Spokane chapter of the NAACP violated the city's code of ethics in her application to serve on the citizen police ombudsman commission.
Dolezal has filed racial harassment complaints and claimed earlier this year to have received hate mail at her office. Police said Friday they were dropping all cases involving Dolezal.
Here's a link to the closing of the hate mail investigation.
Here's the other link on the investigation on her behavior while on the ombudsman panel.
The Rev. Happy Watkins, a former president of the Spokane NAACP and co-founder of Spokanes annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebration, said he has no problem with Dolezal remaining the head of the local NAACP chapter.
She became president because she ran against James Wilburn and won, he said, referring to the branchs former president who was defeated in an election last year. She didnt run on a black issue or a white issue.
but I'll be willing to bet that they postponed the meeting to work out the details of her resignation.
And I'm sure her parents will be happy, too. She'll be back where she belongs. Everyone, back where they belong, just as it should be. The groups behind this will be glad it all worked out the way it should as well, if things I've heard are true. That area is crawling with white supremacists.
What a fucking shame.
She's responsible for the mess she's in, not her parents, her.
They see through the bullshit and I hope they stick to their guns. I imagine they're receiving a groundswell of pressure from the torch and pitchfork wielding Twitterverse to fire Rachel Donezal.
I hope they stay focused and continue to do the right thing; seek the truth and refuse to be influenced by internet hysteria.
Obviously if there's been fraud it isn't good, but all I've seen so far is typical manufactured outrage based on internet fluff. All the claims of lies aren't based on anything substantial. My personal observation has been that those howling about this the loudest are white people. It's almost as if they empathize with the parents. Well of course they're white. They surely had to set THAT straight! Who wouldn't do that? She had to be brought back to the fold. You can't pretend to be who you aren't, it isn't natural! Also of course there are posts, especially on DU, about cultural appropriation and accusations of black face. I get that, of course. I'm not denying those aren't issues.
But we don't know what claims of lies are based in fact. Her family history is obviously rocky. And the NAACP seemed to know about it and was okay with it. That and the fact that I believe you should take a person's word for it when they claim their identity, always because it's the right thing and the polite thing to do.
If Rachel Dolezal's parents had proclaimed that they had NEVER lived in a teepee in their entire lives, then I might be willing to accept their version of things as the complete and unvarnished truth. As it is, they have admitted that they DID live in a teepee in 1974; three years before Rachel was born.
Who's to say that Rachel wasn't raised on stories of teepees and bows and arrows... I think this family puts the 'fun' in dys'fun'ctional and it's anybody's guess how they brainwashed their children.
I don't think that Rachel Dolezal made these stories up, out of whole cloth. I think she had help.
about a child who is a serial liar. I certainly do.
the media came to them and maybe they'd had enough of her lies and wanted to set the record straight in the hopes that she would get the psychiatric help she desperately needs.
As I said before, there's no law saying you have to talk to the media and they did.
Do all fundy parents who adopt their children from abroad abuse them? No, but enough of them do that when a child in that arrangement makes the claim? I'm going to think it's highly likely the claim is valid. These are parents who are talking to the media and are all too happy to throw their daughter to the media wolves. I believe they abused their daughter. Do I think Rachel Dolezal is telling lies? Of course, but as I've said. The NAACP supported her and that was enough for me, and I furvently hope they still will, and don't let the media digging up these asshole parents of hers derail her.
So what are you talking about? What are you suggesting they lied about?
If they had a problem with what their daughter was doing, they could have gone directly to the NAACP. Any parent who would subject their daughter to what she is going through now is no one anyone should take seriously.
The parents are behind this tawdy media crucifixion and I hope they're proud of themselves. Ultimately, I think they're going to live to regret their decision to throw their daughter to the wolves; which is exactly what internet social media is... a pack of angry wolves with blood in the air. Blood, and a sense of humor!
I don't think they realize that by outing their daughter, they've effectively outed themselves... I hope they're ready to reap what they've sown. There's not a closet big enough to contain the skeletons that I suspect are about to come tumbling out of their closets!
You're blaming the parents for the mess Rachael is in rather than Rachael and her serial lying?
It's all her parent's fault?
Her lying has nothing to do with it?
Does the media and the public know all about every mistake you've made?
I'm not a serial liar in a position of leadership.
So, you're telling me that her lying about numerous life experiences have nothing to do with the mess she's in?
What is so hard about this?
including lies about her parents, then there would have been nothing for the media to pursue.
What is so hard about this?
...are involved in familial litigation that's warped their sense of what's right and wrong. Now that the family lawsuit is about to go to trial, they're taking the low road while posturing themselves as having taken the high road. In other words, they're sadistically relishing in their 15 minutes of fame.
They may have bitten off more than they are willing to chew, by throwing their daughter under the bus. They've been estranged from her for quite a few years and have chosen this moment in time to 'honestly answer the media's queries' as though they didn't have a choice. I hope they're ready for the media shitstorm that they've unleashed. In my opinion, it couldn't happen to a nicer couple.
The internet and social media is unrelenting and I think the parents are about to find that out... the hard way.
based on watching the parents as they wend their way through the mainstream television news circuit; ignorant to the reality of what's really happening to them.
The Rachel Dolezal story has officially jumped the shark at this point, and there's no such thing as enough bandages to stanch the bleeding from this media and internet feeding frenzy
I'm not talking about a bored cat, batting around a lizard This is angry piranhas, latched onto an open wound.
The only thing left to do, now, is sit back and watch
Do you think she's in any way responsible for this media circus?
...but no, I do not think there would have been this media circus, if not for the actions of her parents.
Is the media not aware that there are people who think parents who would do this to their children are scum?
Her parents didn't lie about her being born in a teepee.
Her parents didn't lie about her brother being her son.
Her parents didn't lie and tell people her biological father was her step father.
She has told so many lies. Many of which reflect negatively on her parents.
I think her parents have every right to defend themselves.
She could easily embrace black culture without all the blatant lies she's told.
They've kept quiet all these years in the face of her lies, lies like telling people that her adopted brother was really her son, lies like her father used to whip her like a slave with a baboon whip, lies like her receiving mail in the NAACP mail box?
Why anyone would defend this liar is beyond me.
She's a liar, and her real parents had had enough of her lies and went public.
If you cheat your way through school you're really not hurting anyone, right? So, what's the big deal?
Response to TeeYiYi (Original post)
"Bruce Jenner" did not decide to be a woman. There are biological factors to being transgender. Caitlyn was unable to express her true gender until recently, but she did not just *become* a woman. And because there are biological factors involved in being transgender, it is not the same as race, which is not a biological thing. It is a societal construct forced upon us externally. Because it is given to us, whether we like it or not, externally by society, we can't just change it.
Do a thought experiment here. Can an African American with dark skin decide to change his or her race? No, because society won't let him or her. It isn't a choice or people could simply choose to stop being discriminated against. Obviously discrimination happens whether they want it or not, so it isn't a choice or something you can change.
People can't just decide to change their gender or race. That isn't what happened with Caitlyn Jenner, she didn't *change* her gender - she only changed her gender expression and made it more authentic to who she is - and I'm tired of hearing people say, "If Bruce Jenner can become a woman. . . "
there is nothing biological about makeup, curled hair, corsets, and high heels--all of which Caitlyn utilized to express her gender.
but their gender is not. I don't dress in a feminine way, but that does not change my gender. My gender is biological. Transgender people's genders also have a biological component.
...Rachel Dolezal used to express her self-perceived cultural identity. She wanted to be black so she emulated black culture. How is that now possibly being convoluted into being a bad thing?
Good post, marshall.
A trans woman MMA fighter recently fought a cis woman. She fractured the cis woman's orbital bone in her eye. The cis woman claimed that when in the grasp of the trans woman, she couldn't move like she normally could when fighting another cis woman. According to those who watched, the fight was a one-sided massacre.
Most trans women don't seem to participate in competitive sports. But as trans people become more and more accepted and welcomed into sports, it's a question without an answer. Even though I support trans people 100%, that doesn't mean we can't discuss issues like these.
No matter how much like a woman you feel, in many cases you still have male musculature. It's like someone with dyslexia competing in the Special Olympics: yeah, you can kick everyone's ass, but are you still going to feel good about yourself?
That being said, I don't want to be the gatekeeper for who gets to compete.
and also points to the glee people have in public humiliations.
Only white people have the luxury to play pretend at being black. Black people have to be mostly white to pass, like being a octaroon or a quadroon, basically white folks with a few drops of black blood. It's insulting that white folks are now telling us we have to let white ladies be black if they want to be a part of our culture. I guess we don't get to decide for ourselves whether to accept that.
Tiger Woods, King of Pop, and Mariah Carey were NEVER accepted as white. Never! But a white lady wants to play black and go around in wigs and spray tan, and black folks are admonished by white people to accept her. No. She needs help, not a bunch of folks going along with her bullshit. I have never seen white folks this defensive about a black woman before; but for a white woman playing a black woman? Oh, yeah...
We have enough of our identity and culture and history stolen from us. No she cannot be black.
were black when they left the plantation and white when they got where they were going. Should any of them be allowed to be black?
Saying only white people have the luxury to play black then qualifying it with unless they are light skinned kind of leave a giant population of 'black' people in the mushy middle that you seem to dismiss in an offhanded way. If a light skinned black who could pass at black, shaved their 'white' hair and spend a lot of time in the sun would they also be guilty of playing black, or playing blacker at least?
But having 5 percent black blood does not make you black.
A light skinned black (like my husband) is BLACK. Even if they have blond hair and blue eyes...
But if you are talking about darkening the skin for a minstrel show, it's wrong...
What if your parents decided to hide your racial identity from you so you thought you were white but found out that you had a secret black parent. Is there a grace period in reclaiming a hidden racial identity.
Everyone on earth has some african blood. Remember that KKK fool who found out he was like 6 percent african? He was not black. At all.
You can speak about your heritage, but not as a way to play pretend. I have about 1/4 native american blood and 1/4 white (scots irish) and the rest black... I do not go around saying that i'm a member of the cherokee nation or that I'm as Irish as they come. Why not? Because as a black person, I cannot do that. The Cherokee nation did not accept me into the tribe, I'm a black looking woman so no, the Irish are probably not going to rush to claim me. I am black. I don't see white folks running to accept me into whiteness, and I'm much whiter than that woman is black.
People can claim their little 5 percent black blood if they want to, just don't go around giving speeches about how their hair is a four out of five on the nappiness scale, lying and shit. Keep it real.
One of the things I'm finding so fascinating about this story is the discussions of ethnic authenticity, and which parts of one's ethnicity it's okay to go all in with and which parts get left out.
I'm 1/4 Scots-Irish, and as a white person, I can be as Celtic as I want. I have a Scots-Irish last name, and I can "pass" as full-blooded with ease. Never mind the fact that it's only part of my heritage and that my dark McFro (three out of five on the nappiness scale!) is actually from the Swedish side, it's still something I can go all out with. I can be 110% Celtic and nobody's going to blink.
You've got an equal claim to that heritage, but according to the way race is constructed and defined in America today, your African blood somehow makes you not "authentically" Irish.....?
The idea that part of your heritage is somehow cancelled out by another part is so ridiculous. (I'm not saying you're ridiculous, I'm saying the "rules" are.)
I don't have to pick between my various Euromutt ethnicities. I can be Swedish, Scots-Irish, and German ALL AT THE SAME TIME.
White privilege, yo.
Blackness is an experience, not just an ancestry. If she grew up as a white person with white parents and white grandparents in a society that prizes whiteness, what kind of black experience has she really had?
By way of comparison, I'm half Swedish. My grandma, who passed last year, grew up in a household that was 100% ethnically Swedish, and her baptismal certificate is in Swedish. Her father and her maternal grandparents were from Sweden.
But am I really SWEDISH? Not at all. I don't speak a word of Swedish, I don't cook Swedish food, I don't celebrate any Swedish holidays, and I don't follow any Swedish traditions. My family are all lapsed Lutherans, and that's really about it. Even our Scandinavian genetics are more of a quirk than a heritage.
If I went in search of my "authentic" Swedish roots, I would be as much a tourist as the next person. It wouldn't be something handed down to me, it would be something I invented for myself. That cultural connection is gone.
If she's got an undiscovered black great-grandparent (or whatever), does that make her blackness authentic? Or would it be a return to the one drop rule, where any trace of African blood in a person who is culturally 100% white makes that person irredeemably BLACK?
I don't speak Danish and I've never actually been to Denmark. Yet, to all who would inquire, I am Danish! It's just the major part of my ancestry that I can relate to, but don't ask me what they eat or how they dress... Truth be told, I'm Heinz 57 American: Danish, English, Irish, Scottish and a magical drop of Cherokee.
Race and culture are things I've never had a strong grasp of. I grew up in a Mormon society but I'm not a Mormon. I went to all white schools where cultural background was just not that obvious or important. I remember one student who always showed up on St. Patrick's Day with her Irish pride and a green shamrock pinned to her lapel... What a maroon!
"...as much a tourist as the next person." That's me!
Black people... Native American people... Brown people of every hue, have cultural history that white people envy. I'm one of those white people that have no cultural background to speak of or to celebrate... If you were to ask me what it's like to be Danish, our conversation would come to a screeching halt.
Rachel Dolezal grew up around African American culture and she learned to love and appreciate it, and to adopt it as her own. More power to her for celebrating the cultural diversity that she grew up around, and her decision to support and become closer to her African American siblings.
Her entire resume supports her commitment to black culture and the background that she grew up around, as a result of choices that her parents made. Embracing black culture, especially when your adopted siblings are African American, would seem the obvious and admirable thing to do.
Attacking Rachel Dolezal for embracing black culture, as a member of a mixed race family, seems cruel to say the least. I hope she's able to rise above this onslaught of internet cruelty and continue to advocate on behalf of people of color everywhere.
This attack on her has been heartless and beyond belief. Who, in their right mind, would possibly support the online bullying that Rachel Dolezal is now being subjected to? I can't imagine it.
My hope is that the black community, in her city and at large, will reassess the situation and come to her defense like she has done for them for so long.
"black ancestry" (we are ALL born "out of Africa" and
the race of her biological parents and THEIR ancestry - which is white.
Have adopted brothers who were black does not make this disturbed
...isn't ever going to make me think of her as black, any more than seeing Beyonce in a blonde wig would make me think of her as white. In both cases, I consider their appearance to be an outward expression of how they see themselves, that they've chosen. Each has borrowed from the other one's culture.
I sincerely don't understand why you're so angry at her. She clearly never meant to harm the African American community by embracing black culture and she wasn't pretending when she took up the battle for civil rights and racial equality. Her work to end racism and police brutality wasn't a ruse.
How, specifically, has Rachel Dolezal harmed you, bravenak? If you truly believe that she's harmed you personally, do you then just disregard her past work with the NAACP and any good that she's tried to do on behalf of people of color?
I don't deny that she's a little unhinged but the social media pile-on is ridiculous. I look forward to hearing her explanation tomorrow. Hopefully things will begin to make more sense.
I am a bit peeved that when a white woman wants to play black, black folks are admonished to accept that. We don't get to play white, we have to actually BE mostly white for that. She can put on some spray tan, tell a bunch of lies, throw on a nappy wig, and boom, she's black. It's a privilege that only white folks have.
...play white all the time by wearing straight-haired wigs; and white people play black by bathing themselves in fake tan, in an attempt to appear naturally exotic when in fact, they are extremely melanin challenged.
I got to be who I am by way of my European ancestors. Sounds like you had a few of those yourself. Doesn't mean I don't wish I had skin more like yours. I would defend your right to throw on a red wig and dress in a kilt if you suddenly decided to embrace your 1/4 Irish/Scot heritage.
We all seem to be multiracial. Getting angry at someone else for how they choose to present themselves outwardly seems like a huge waste of energy. Cultural diversity should be celebrated. We're all just people underneath, with different packaging...like presents under a Christmas tree.
It's not just straightening our hair to fit in with the dominant culture? It's not playing white, it's assimilation. Some black folks were born with straight hair, like my husband and my grandmother. And my nephew, he's blond with green eyes. We all refer to ourselves as black. She did not simply wear ethnic hair styles, she lied. She did not tan just to look a certain way, she did it as a part of the deception.
This woman needs professional help, not people feeding into her nonsense.
...about assimilation. I think it works both ways.
The 'playing white' 'playing black' comments were a riff on something you said: re: "when a white woman wants to play black..."
Look, bravenak, I'm not going to go to the mat trying to defend the lies that got Rachel Dolezal where she's at today. She's clearly not wrapped too tight and I don't know her from a hole in the wall. You, on the other hand, I have respect for as a member of DU.
I hope the anger and media frenzy surrounding this situation dies down. In the mean time, if I've said anything to offend you, I didn't mean to and I sincerely apologize.
...play white all the time by wearing straight-haired wigs; and white people play black by bathing themselves in fake tan, in an attempt to appear naturally exotic when in fact, they are extremely melanin challenged. "
There is so much that is wrong and appalling in this post.
my disgust increased with each reading.
the only quote was the word "play" the rest was all yours.
...that I don't believe people are "playing white" or "playing black" just because they choose to cosmetically alter their outward appearance for the sake of perceived beauty.
She said a man who wasn't her father was her father to try to convince people she was black. This isn't just wearing dreadlocks.
...of her actions have to do with the internal strife surrounding family litigation. She's disowned her dad for some reason and maybe the 'why' of it will become apparent when the lawsuit is finally settled.
Maybe she'll touch on the lawsuit tomorrow when she goes public with her explanation for this whole, sordid debacle.
that I don't believe people are "playing white" or "playing black" just because they choose to cosmetically alter their outward appearance for the sake of perceived beauty.
I'm responding to that. She didn't just cosmetically alter her outward appearance. She outright lied about it and was indeed "playing black." She told everyone she was black. She didn't just wear dreadlocks or something.
...doesn't come as a shock to you. People lie for multitudes of reasons. I can only speculate about her reasons for lying but here's the thing... How is pretending you have African American blood in you the WORST. THING. EVER! ?
After all the good that she's done for the African American community, why is she being crucified for lying? Why are people of color throwing her under the bus for saying she's black? Just looking at her tells you that that's not likely true but why does it matter that she lied about having black dna, to the detriment of everything else she's stood for and done on behalf of black people everywhere? I don't get it...
As I said, people lie. She lied. So what?
where you said she wasn't "playing at being black" but was just altering her outward appearance. So it appears you are going back on that now - you recognize that she wasn't just altering her outward appearance.
It wasn't just the spray tan and wig. She led about who her father is, the police reports of racial harassment, saying she was beaten because of her skin, etc.
Besides, she could have been a very positive member of the NAACP as the white woman she is.
The elaborate ruse is the real thing that confuses me. I am kinda surprised at all the support she is getting even with all of the lies.
"The NAACP branch in Spokane, Wash., has postponed a meeting Monday where its president, Rachel Dolezal, was expected to speak about the furor sparked after her parents said she has falsely portrayed herself as black for years while actually being white.
The chapter said Sunday on Facebook that the meeting would be rescheduled "due to the need to continue discussion with regional and national NAACP leaders."
According to KHQ-TV in Spokane, Dolezal had earlier sent a message to NAACP members saying she would address the situation at a group meeting Monday night.
The city of Spokane is investigating whether she lied about her ethnicity when she applied to be on the police board."
Shortly after Dolezals announcement on Sunday, board member Lawrence Burnley wrote a response challenging her authority to delay the meeting:
Im puzzled by your decision to arbitrarily cancel/postpone the meeting without input from the executive committee which is scheduled to meet today. The Associations by-laws provides specific guidelines concerning monthly general/branch meetings. Article V, Section 1 states, Regular meetings shall be held on a fix day or date each month. That date, as agreed upon by the executive committee, is the third Monday of each month which is tomorrow. I dont see any language in the by-laws that empowers you, or any one member, to arbitrarily cancel/postpone tomorrows meeting.
Burnley also objected to Dolezal attributing the announcement to Spokane NAACP Chapter, writing, This is misleading as it conveys a decision has been made by the chapter or the executive committee of the chapter which not the case.
"Burnley also objected to Dolezal attributing the announcement to Spokane NAACP Chapter, writing, This is misleading as it conveys a decision has been made by the chapter or the executive committee of the chapter which not the case.
The lying continues.
I'm trying. I keep. I want to. I just.
Oh hell... This gif sums up my response to your post better than anything I could type in my current state.
I do feel sorry for her because I think she's got mental health issues and they're serious. I don't think what she did was "right" but I also don't think it was "normal." I have to wonder if she's suffering some kind of post-traumatic stress that causes her to act out in ways that don't make sense, or she's suffering a chemical imbalance--or both. I have to wonder if the only place she felt loved/validated was in the community, and if she didn't get much if any affection (and maybe some abuse--maybe not a bullwhip, but sexual abuse) when she was growing up.
If she were my kid, I'd be looking to try to get her some help, not going on CNN and making sure that her name will be on the 1000 Screwiest Stories of 2015~~! Her name and face are known around the world, she's going to have to get out the Miss Clairol and change her persona all up to be able to hide out for quite a while.
I just hope she doesn't kill herself. Sometimes when people's carefully crafted web of lies are pulled apart, that's what they do because they "just can't handle the truth" to grab a movie quote.
I'm not into praising her (though she did create a pretty good light-bright impression--she does have a good eye for detail) or excusing her, but I can't get all torch and pitchfork either. She's not well, she needs help. She's still young in the big arc of life, maybe she can ditch the need to lie, gather up and nurture her own self esteem, and do something worthwhile in the second act of her existence. Here's hoping, anyway.
In a weird way, just the contrast of her story and the "pool party beat down" one, happening so close together, have served to get people talking about the issues of privilege, assumption, etc. So there's one thing she did, even if it was unintentional!
in an area that is literally crawling with a bunch of rabid racists, with verified actual attacks and harassment against Blacks.
You don't think that doing such a thing is damaging to the cause of raising awareness and fighting racism, setting back the work of honest activists?
Now she's able to just go on her merry way, pretend whatever she may choose to "be" next, but leaving the inland Pacific Northwest with a slew of hateful people who've been empowered by her privileged charade.
Some of the things that people are saying in an effort to defend this woman's actions are simply beyond all logic and reason.
I missed your reply, earlier. Wish I hadn't, cause it does seem rather futile.
I don't think that I want to read anymore of it now, either.
that it isn't possible something happened to her? Rabid racists would certainly attack someone like Rachel Dolezal, even if they knew she was really white. Especially if they knew she was really white. I don't think she actually lied aout the attacks against her. It's why I'm not so sure all these claims of lies are really lies.
That's only accessible with a key and the letter had no stamp or barcode (so it couldn't have been delivered by the USPS carrier). So yeah, I think she easily made it up.
But if it was a PO worker doing the harassing, it would be possible. And in an area crawling with white supremacists, more likely than those PO workers giving the interview would let on. Of course they're not going to say, "Yeah, this area is pretty sketchy, anything can happen"
She lied about a black man being her father, she lied about her brother being her son, she lied about having to hunt for her food as a child with a bow and arrow, she lied about living in S. Africa, and her biggest lie is her claiming she's AA when childhood pictures show quite clearly she's white.
She was a white woman posing, working, and organizing as a Black woman and every single aryan agitator, closet klan kreep, and all of the flat-out bigoted ignoramuses now know it.
Have you even read any of the comments at local papers like The Spokesman Review or The Coeur d' Alene Press?
Credibility of local NAACP leader Rachel Dolezal questioned ~ June 11, 2015
Black like me? ~ June 11, 2015
Or, try reading these interviews from Eastern Washington University, in her college paper and then get back to me.
A Life to be Heard ~ February 5, 2015
Professor Interprets Racial Differences ~ February 26, 2014
You realize I'm not the one hopping up and down calling her a liar?
I am not arguing with anyone.
The sad truth is that because of this charade, the elaborate ruse that Rachel Dolezal managed to pull off, all of the extremely hard work that activists, fighting against racism and for basic human rights, have been doing for years in the Inland Pacific Northwest is now being called into question.
Just read some of those comments at the links to the local newspapers I've given you, if you doubt the damage she's done.
She's from Germanic stock, for God's sake, complete with blonde hair and freckles! She's got a major screw loose!
I'm English-Irish-Welsh-Sicilian-Slovak, and no tanning agent, no Jeri curl and no adopted siblings CAN MAKE ME A BLACK PERSON.
you use some interesting examples.
Who, e.g., would deny that Michael Jackson was mentally unstable?
Who, e.g., would claim that Beyonce's wigs are her attempts to be a White woman?
Who, e.g., would deny Tiger Woods, son of an Asian mother and an A-A father, the right to declare himself either or both ethnicities?
The PROBLEM with Rachel is she is denying her parentage IN THE FACE OF REALITY AND IRREFUTABLE EVIDENCE. This is the definition of, to be technical here, NUTS.
Michael Jackson had the chronic and progressive skin disease vitiligo, which makes patches of your skin lose colour. His 'whitening' was not an attempt to 'be a white person'. It was an attempt to not look like a piebald horse by matching the rest of his skin to the parts that were already losing colour on their own.
Although we can never imagine what it's like to actually be in his shoes, we can try to understand and learn what it's like for him and many others.
and the children he chose to adopt? He's the only person in Hollywood who didn't adopt a kid from someplace in the developing world. Micheal Jackson's issues with race went far beyond vitiligo.
He was married to the biological mother of the older two.
and the girl on the Swiss Miss chocolate box. I'm no genetics expert but I don't think fathered those kids biologically.
I hesitate to go there, but I read that the actor who played Oliver! in the movie of the same name donated sperm for those pregnancies.
However, he and Michael Jackson were friends and I think it was out of friendship. I wouldn't assume it was because Michael Jackson wanted white babies.
Since Michael Jackson was legally married to the mother, he is automatically considered their father. And the third one doesn't look "Nordic."
Nor is her work with the NAACP.
Her lying about hate crimes and her heritage over and over again is the issue.
This ongoing criticism and denigration makes no sense.
Mentally disturbed and out of touch with reality. Imagine what the outrage would be if a light-skinned
REAL African-American woman claimed she was white?
I don't understand why so many people even care about this and why it's a big deal.
for her, outside of making her a trending topic. maybe that was her intent. if she wanted to define herself, certainly there had to be a better way to go about it other than being a liar. if we were to go with the whole "borrowing from the black culture to define herself," line, then what is that saying exactly? are we to believe that part of the definition of being black is to be a liar? because that's kinda what's being said with that line of reasoning. if she is upset that she is getting so much media attention, perhaps she should have thought about that before concocting such a stupid scheme.
Cody got where he was because studios simply would not hire Native actors at the time. he did misrepresent himself - but in so doing he was not taking parts away from people with the actual descent, as there were few to none at the time. And the dud gave back, big-time, he worked with and learned from numerous native communities, and put his wealth into helping them. he fostered and adopted native children, funded schools and hospitals, joined their causes. An the whole time, they knew he was an Italian dude. But for the most part, he was respected (or at least well-tolerated) because of how much he put in.
Dolezal on the other hand, appears to have knowingly been making efforts to step over and take advantage of people with her charade. She lied and lied and lied some more, purely for selfish gain. and the black community has, by and large, rejected her now that she's "out."
There are some similarities between the two people, but they cannot be equated at all.
The analogy couldn't be more perfect.
He received Native American acting parts when there were actual Native American actors who would have qualified in his place. He falsified records of his birth and maintained the 'indigenous Native American' ploy until his dying day.
He was hired for hundreds of film and television roles as a Native American, based on his falsified claim of being Cherokee-Cree. He even landed a gig to do 'Indian chanting' on a Joni Mitchell album:
I'm not trying to say anything against the man, I'm merely using his case as an example of people "passing" as one race or another for a multitude of reasons. Lying is part of the ruse.
He married two Native American women and adopted two children of Native American descent, with his first wife.
The analogy fits like a glove.
Who, exactly, did Rachel Dolezal "take advantage of with her charade?" Yes, it appears that she lied or stretched the truth but so did Iron-Eyes Cody; and it was his family... his half sister who finally outed him, three years before he died.
I have no ill will toward Iron-Eyes Cody and I have none for Rachel Dolezal. Yes, he supported Native American causes. So did Rachel; support African American causes. I don't have one iota of disdain for either one of them.
She openly disowned her white biological parents and even
was photographed with a black man she identified as her father.
And - she LIED. It's one thing to "represent" what you believe in,
it's another thing to DECEIVE.
No one should trust her now. There is NO excuse for her completely
denying her white heritage.
I'm not black,
But there's a whole lots a times
I wish I could say I'm not white."
"Trouble Every Day". 1966
1. She lied about who her father was.
2. She claimed her adopted brother (who happens to be African American) as her biological son.
3. MJ never said he was white. He had a medical condition which effected his skin pigmentation.
4. No one is faulting her for exploring African American culture.
...likely had body dysmorphic disorder and altered skin pigmentation from bleaching his skin. I'm a huge fan of Michael Jackson and continue to defend his right to alter his outward appearance in any way that made him happy.
According to Taraborrelli, in 1986, Jackson was diagnosed with vitiligo, which Tarraborrelli noted was sometimes considered by doctors to be a consequence of damage done by bleaching chemicals over the years. However, skin bleaching is not the only suspected cause of vitiligo which is a rare non-contagious disease. The causes are not known, but a range of genetic, auto-immune, and environmental causes are suspected. Between 1% and 2% of the worldwide population are considered to be affected. The depigmentation occurs in patches, and affects all ethnic/racial groups equally. While the disorder cannot be cured, the progression of the patches can be stopped.
New York plastic surgeon Dr. Pamela Lipkin, who has never treated Jackson or reviewed his medical records, said, "when you look at the other features, the skin bleaching sort of goes along with what I think was his quest for beauty, so I have to wonder what came first? Vitiligo or lighter skin?" Noting that Jackson had even skin tone when he was younger, Lipkin's interpretation was that "probably he's trying to look Caucasian: His skin is whiter. His nose is getting thinner every six months. His lips are getting thinner. His eyebrows are getting higher. His eyes are getting wider every time. His cheekbones are getting bigger."
When producer Quincy Jones who worked closely with Jackson at the time Jackson's skin transformation began, was asked about Jackson's facial transformation he stated: "It's ridiculous, man! Chemical peels and all of it. And I don't understand it. But he obviously didn't want to be black...You see his kids?"
The Jacksons were traumatized as children by their father. In 2003, Joe Jackson admitted to whipping his children when they were young.
Who knows what the truth is behind Rachel Dolezal's upbringing? Ultimately, at some point, the truth will come out.
As well as thousands of other people. It's called vitiligo.
Rogers noted in his autopsy report that Jackson's lips were tattooed pink, while his eyebrows were a dark tattoo. The front of his scalp was also tattooed black, apparently to blend his hairline in with the wigs he wore.
The autopsy confirmed what Jackson told people who questioned why his skin tone became lighter in the 1980s. Jackson had "vitiligo, a skin pigmentation disease," Rogers said. "So, some areas of the skin appear light and others appear dark."
she hand the audcity to tell a Hispanic women she wasn't Hispanic enough to be part of the blacklivematter movement .
She a fraud , need to step down , and seek help. I have yet to see the good she has done for the blk community of Spokane!
There white people that do great jobs for the blk community and understand the culture without putting black face and making a mockery of black culture.
If she wants to embrace the black culture fine, but don't think blackness can be turn on and off !
I'm still wondering what good has she done for the blk community ? since that the first thing her defenders say !
Her faking hate crime makes it harder for real victims of racism to be taken serious
Thank you for making that statement!
I don't know why it's so difficult for some others to understand that.
She has done real damage to the cause of fighting racism up here in the Northwest.
Welcome to DU, CTBlueboy!
The NAACP embraces all people of different ethnic origin. However, she lied about her etnicity and perhaps taken a scholarship from someone from a diverse background, who deserved it more than she did.
Lying is not acceptable. Lying shows that you are not credible!
over-drama from the media, like "How dare she be black?" If it's ok for Bruce Jenner to become Caitlyn Jenner, why can't Rachel embrace the race she feels she is?!
When can I expect to be declared a Queen of England?
But realistically, are you against transgender?
Dolezal, meanwhile, has declined to comment directly about her background, saying Thursday the "question is not as easy as it seems. There's a lot of complexities, and I don't know that everyone would understand that."
She couldn't be reached Friday when contacted by The Associated Press.
Friday night, she tweeted, I am very happy to see more people joining us #TransracialLivesMatter #WrongSkin.
She also tweeted a picture of herself next to a picture of Caitlyn Jenner, with the caption who are you to decide what is right for me?
Thanks for posting the link to your thread yesterday...I missed that one completely. Reading it now.
I am getting annoyed by seeing the two situations compared, over and over and over again, and seeing people say that she "BECAME" a woman or decided to become a woman.
I've got nothing to offer in defense of Dolezal, don't get me wrong, but that account was started on June 12, about the time the controversy broke, so I highly doubt it's really her.
The weirdos have been coming out of the woodwork online since Friday, especially with the bigoted attacks against trans people and spewing idiotic comparisons with Dolezal's ruse. I don't do Twitter, but I might just give KIRO a call and point out what you've noted to them. They should post a retraction if it's a phony account, so maybe they will.
Thanks for the heads-up!
(not gonna click on that twitter link...wouldn't want to give her (if it's real) or whatever bigot created it (if it's fake) any hits, at all.
If people know definitively from the time they are little that they are a different gender than their bodies, and this is accepted by society as real, then why can that not also be true about race?
People have believed for many years that transgender people were making it up. Now society knows that is not the case.
And the NAACP has gotten tons of pushback on social media from Black activists. It's a great org but they aren't infallible.
in her childhood and this is the way she's dealing with it. Having said that, assuming a different persona is hardly something unusual to the human condition. Halloween is the most popular adult holiday. Cosplay is more popular than ever. First person video games. Furries. You name it. People love to dress up and assume alternate identities for whatever reason. I am more fascinated by her behavior than I am offended by it.
I think some counseling for her would probably be appropriate. I don't have enough energy to hate on her. Her life seems sad enough already.
Rachel obviously went about expressing her true racial identity in the wrong way, but I'd imagine she didn't have much support or many transracial role models. Yes, Rachel lied. Jenner lied to his first wife who thought she was marrying a man when Jenner knew all along that she was a really a woman. She lied to the athletic authorities and said she was a man knowing that she is in fact a woman.
Jenner got the courage to tell the truth that she's a woman, and stop living the lie that she's a man. It was difficult because people are not accepting and she knew people would accuse her off having mental health problems and worse. Before expressing her gender identity to the rest of the world, she enjoyed the privileges that came along with being a man.
Rachel got the courage to tell the truth that she's black and stop living the lie that she's Caucasian. Before Rachel had the courage to express her true racial identity, she had white privilege. Rachel can't "go back" to being white anymore than Jenner can "go back" to being a man.
Jenner is a woman, regardless of dress, hairstyle, or inborn physical characteristics. Rachel is an African American person, regardless of dress, hairstyle, or inborn physical characteristics. It's unfortunate that it makes some people uncomfortable for Rachel to express her true identity publically because it doesn't fit their world view.
It's a ridiculous strawman brought up by the white nationalist site VDARE to piss on transgender people.
Stop parroting that nonsense here.
\(ˌ tran(t)s-ˈrā-shəl, (ˌ tranz-\adjective
:involving, encompassing, or extending across two or more races<transracial adoption>
First Use: 1970
Also, what word would you prefer that she use to describe her?
Interracial adoption and "transracial" as transforming a person's physical appearance are not the same thing.
Seriously, fail. Fail. Stop it.
could Rachel describe herself with that would make you comfortable?
"Transracial" as a concept (not just a term, a concept) was developed by hatemongerers to bash transgender people, and you've fallen for it perfectly.
There's absolutely no evidence supporting any sort of "transracial" phenomenon. There is significant evidence supporting gender dysphoria and transgender as a phenomenon.
Just stop, seriously.
I read this article and decided that I support both women's choices.
Gender is an identity formed by preferences towards what society calls masculine and what society calls feminine.
They are not comparable. Stop insisting they are.
who have had to endure the lies she told about them.
This woman needs professional help and I hope she gets it and is able to repair her relationship with her parents and go on with her life.
(video at site, from an African American trans woman)
editing to try to get video right in this post.
...and see if I can help to stop you from hurting yourself...
First of all, I appreciate everything that you said in defense of Rachel Dolezal, and in defense of trans women everywhere. Your motives are pure and your intentions are admirable.
That said, Rachel Dolezal is not black. She may love black people. She may have grown up around black friends and siblings. She may identify and prefer blackness as an experience and a way of life. She may even dream in mostly black, vs. white.... But, she's not black.
She's a confused individual who may have grown up in a truly fucked up environment. Her 'blackness' appears to be some screwed up vendetta and retaliation against her family; her parents in particular... and who could blame her? (They suck.) But, using blackness to get back at your parents is pretty messed up.
Rachel Dolezar is not African American. 50,000 years of evolution (sorry creationists) has washed the African continent right out of her gene pool. Whether ruse or reality, she Just. Aint. Black. At least not in any accepted scientific rubric of measurement.
Yes, she loved, emulated and supported the idea of being African American. It makes sense that she would do that, with black siblings and an African American husband.
I'll stop this soliloquy, but suffice it to say, there's more to this story than meets the eye. This woman ain't right, and only time can flesh out the truth behind the sordid reality show that we're now being made to witness...
Thank you, prayin4rain, for attempting to defend the LGBT community and trans women in particular. Your intentions are honorable. However, don't get caught up in the train wreck that is Rachel Dolezal... Those cars are already all over the tracks and, at this juncture, you're only going to get hurt. (Or lose a limb.) The choice is yours.
and I think I get it. Rachel was not three or four years old feeling like an African American person.
She grew up, identified with African Americans and DECIDED to start trying to look black. But, she didn't stop there, she also started telling a whole bunch of damaging lies.
I do tend to be a bit overly sympathetic. I appreciate your response and I will take the other poster's advice and just stop it. Haha
How a person rolls is nobody's business but their own. That said, this Rachel business is a sticky wicket and standing back, while watching it play out is the best advice I can give.
...and then to present yourself as speaking FOR that group is just wrong. My people deal with this shit all the time.