LOS ANGELES, June 12, 2015—Last week nobody knew the name Rachel Dolezal. Now she’s breaking the Internet.
In case you’ve missed it, Rachel Dolezal is the president of the Spokane chapter of the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People), which has a decades-long history of advocacy in the black community and for black causes.
Rachel identified herself as “Black” on a City of Spokane employment application, says her father is Black, and has claimed to be the victim of a number of hate crimes. So how is this atypical of any person who does race-based activism, and why should we care?
Apparently Rachel Dolezal is now under scrutiny over the veracity of her ethnicity and her claims of being a victim of racism. Ruthanne and Lawrence Dolezal of Montana have come forward saying that Dolezal is definitely their daughter and most certainly not black. Since the Dolezals are white, this would be a foregone conclusion.
The two have spoken to the Washington Post and other outlets, stating that Rachel is their natural-born daughter, and they have presented a birth certificate and family pictures of Rachel through her childhood, as a young adult and even at her wedding to corroborate their statements.
So Rachel Dolezal is either the victim of an elaborate character assassination, or she is a fraud.
Of course, the term self-loathing comes to mind. This term is generally applied by leftist and liberals to black conservatives, because we don’t toe the line of groupthink on voting Democrat, speak against the welfare state created by paternalistic liberals that has supported and perpetrated many of the problems in the black community.
Because we refuse to swallow the Kool-Aid on supporting President Obama just because he is black.
They claim we (black conservatives) hate ourselves so much that we want to be white, and we subjugate our true blackness (which in their mind includes voting liberal and supporting liberal causes) in order to be accepted by whites.
Let there be a bit of clarity at this point: No black conservative that I know has a problem being black; we just have a problem with the liberal agenda and what it is has done to black identity.
So Rachel Dolezal could just be a diabolical plant: a white person claiming to be black to continue this destruction of black identity. Only time will tell.
It is all an interesting debate, and I am watching curiously to see whether it just stays a huge punch line or unfolds to a deeper and more substantive discussion. However, if her parents’ claims are true—and they have mad Photoshop skills if they are not—then Rachel Dolezal has some serious issues.
This whole brouhaha is also confirmation that the NAACP has totally lost its relevance.
The once illustrious bastion of black civil rights and equality showed its soft-stepping fecklessness in a statement addressing the Rachel Dolezal allegations. From the New York Times:
In a statement on Friday, the NAACP said, “The NAACP Alaska-Oregon-Washington State Conference stands behind Ms. Dolezal’s advocacy record,” noting that “one’s racial identity is not a qualifying criteria or disqualifying standard for NAACP leadership.
The group also said that Ms. Dolezal was “enduring a legal issue with her family, and we respect her privacy in this matter.”
The spokesperson’s point is that racial identity is not a standard for leadership in the organization; the NAACP was founded, after all, by a number of white people. Between W.E.B. DuBois and Ida B. Wells, Ida was the only one who passed the paper bag test.
What is tragic is the seemed lack of concern over the fraud. This is the same NAACP that fought against the confirmation of conservative Justice Clarence Thomas and called him a prolific Uncle Tom; this is the same NAACP that blacklisted conservative Deneen Borelli from their last convention; this is the same NAACP that got up in arms over Ben Carson’s comparing Obamacare to slavery.
But a white person flat-out lying about being black and manufacturing not only a phony pedigree, but phony hate crimes? Their response is equivalent to a big ol’ yawn. It’s a private matter. Doesn’t cancel out the work she’s done for black people. Nothing to see here.
The organization is useless, and the fact that Rachel Dolezal fraudulently posed and played them for over a decade is mere confirmation of this.
Many on social media are taking it lightly, coming up with some seriously funny stuff. Conservatives (black and white) are even having fun with the #transracial hashtag. After all, if gender is fluid, then why not race?
Me: *goes into a store* Employee: *follows me* Me: it’s ok I’m #transracial I’m actually white don’t worry 🙂 🙂
— blurryface (@pvnkfairy) June 12, 2015
And go read the now trending #AskRachel hashtag for some huge belly laughs.
— timbotim62 (@timbotim62) June 12, 2015
This is Hollywood comedy screenwriting playing out in real life. Truth is sometimes stranger (and funnier) than fiction.
But some of us are not taking it so lightly. Among the Facebook and Twitter feeds, the Blacks who can prove that they are Black from their birth certificates, photos and the circumstances of their lives are calling this woman out for her fraudulent behavior. “Fauxlotto” is the best term so far to describe Rachel Dolezal and her passing as black.
Darnell L. Moore at Identities.Mic has accused Rachel Dolezal of cultural theft:
Cultural appropriation is a contested activity in the U.S., especially in the realms of artistry, but cultural theft committed with the purpose of gaining access to positions or institutional power is more insidious. This is what Dolezal did. According to the Washington Post, for example, when Dolezal ‘applied to Howard University to study art with a portfolio of “exclusively African-American portraiture,” the university “took her for a black woman” and gave her a full scholarship.
One comedienne on Facebook makes the correlation of the invective “sell-out”—which is another term often applied to Black conservatives:
It took this woman to point out the glaring lack of ethics, that the NAACP pretends doesn’t exist:
But I really like this gentleman’s tweet. To use a racially-charged term, he calls a spade a spade:
Just so people know we not getting on #RachelDolezal cuz she white we getting on her ass cuz she lied
— Chamelio Salamander (@QuotingPierre) June 12, 2015
But this last tweet brings it full circle:
— IGNORANCEISDISASTER (@PAINFULTRUTHDAY) June 12, 2015
The fat lady has sung. Last person out needs to hit the lights.