On Rachel Dolezal and White People Wanting to be Brown

Rachel Dolezal, white people want to be black, white people want to be brown
Rachel Dolezal, white people want to be black, white people want to be brown

Image Credit: PBS

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When people ask me why I’m interested in this story, it’s not because Rachel Dolezal chose to identify as a black woman.  I’ve seen that before, as it’s not uncommon for whites living in communities of color.  What fascinates me is the discussion on racial identity.  As someone in a mixed race family, I can’t help but identify with her to some degree… and at the same time, that commonality offends me.  I do not want people to see me as being like Rachel Dolezal.

I do not want to be the white woman who forces her way into the room.  I do not want my voice to be louder than that of a woman of color.

To me, what makes this story the most unsettling is the fact that she PRETENDED to be black.  I’m disgusted that she lied to and manipulated the very community she said she was there to help.

Why did she do it?  Why did she feel the need to hide her ethnicity as a white woman?  Was it to sway the black community into following her without the usual hesitations that many white people may encounter?  Did she use race to her advantage to control the conversations without question… because she’s now viewed as black?

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