|Rachel Anne Dolezal Moore, Lawrence Albert Dolezal, Ruthanne Schertel Dolezal, Esther "Luna" Dolezal, Zachariah Dolezal, Ezra Dolezal, Izaiah Dolezal, Libby Montana, Spokane, Washington, black, white, race, color, identity|
UPDATE: 06/17/15: Rachel Dolezal is now extremely happy about all the media and other attention she is getting. She featured herself on The Morning Show on her personal profile with her bio son and adopted son/brother.
I read a bit more about her bio brother Joshua. Her brother wrote a book about his life growing up in his strict Pentecostal family http://www.amazon.com/Down-Mountaintop-From-Belief-Belonging/dp/1609382390 The book is "Down from the Mountaintop: From Belief to Belonging." It seems they both grew up Christian home schooled. From a review,
"A lyrical coming-of-age memoir, Down from the Mountaintop chronicles a quest for belonging. Raised in northwestern Montana by Pentecostal homesteaders whose twenty-year experiment in subsistence living was closely tied to their faith, Joshua Doležal experienced a childhood marked equally by his parents’ quest for spiritual transcendence and the surrounding Rocky Mountain landscape. Unable to fully embrace the fundamentalism of his parents, he began to search for religious experience elsewhere: in baseball, books, and weightlifting, then later in migrations to Tennessee, Nebraska, and Uruguay. Yet even as he sought to understand his place in the world, he continued to yearn for his mountain home."
Seems they were both home schooled in a very strict religious manner. Then they went to college. I would think their first experience in a school other than their home had a great effect on both Rachel and Joshua. They made their first independent friends. Someone said earlier there is more to the story and there definitely is. Still, Rachel, no matter her upbringing, showed poor judgment and lack of integrity lying about being black. I'm actually amazed no one called her on this before.
Earlier I was willing to give this woman the benefit of the doubt that she identifies as black in terms of culture, community and just got a little carried away and didn't correct people when they assumed she was biracial. It's hard to discern between racial identity crisis/confusion and racial identity as a fixed thing. I'm more likely to believe some gender identity issues are real and permanent as they are evident as such a young age. Maybe if a white/black child were raised in a black/white family I could see the child believing they are the race of the parents even though they aren't.
As a kid I thought I was 100% Mexican because my Nana raised me and she was Mexican. I realized I was only half around age six or so. When I was seven I realized I had lighter skin and hair than our 100% Mexican relatives. I still felt Mexican based on culture and everything else. Still, I never lied and said I had a Mexican mother and father.
Rachel here goes back and forth about her color. It's like she's playing two race cards depending upon the situation. To fight her ex husband in a custody battle she was white. To work for the NAACP she was part black. To sue her ex-employer for racial discrimination she stated she was white. To apply to be a commissioner she was part black. Just pick a color and stick with it.
When asked about her color she stated "I don't stay out of the sun." In reality she had a membership to a tanning salon. Previously she said she didn't dye her skin. Now she admits she uses a "little bronzer to feel pretty." If she used bronzer, self tan all her life, I could believe that. She was white as a lily when she married a black man. Why did she later take up using fake tan? I agree I feel better with a little color and I'm not as white as Rachel. Still, she's very fair and is now medium tan. I pity her skin.
I have a feeling the Rachel story will get messier before it's over. Rachel loves the media attention and doesn't realize she's putting her foot in her mouth every time she opens it. I doubt she'll ever come clean with the truth even if she gets that DNA test on her parents. I believe she has some major issues to be playing such a strange game about her color. I'd like to be darker but I'm not. I am what I am. Not much I can do about it.
UPDATE: 06/15/15: Things keep getting messier. Rachel's older brother Joshuah was sued for allegedly sexually assaulting Rachel's adopted younger sister Esther Dolezal. Rachel claims her brother also sexually assaulted and harassed her. Rachel also claims her ex-husband hit their child and left bruises.
In more disturbing news Rachel sued her school for racial discrimination in 2002 for not giving her a job because she was white. She lost, appealed and lost again. Perhaps Rachel will say she pretended to be black to overcome the discrimination she felt in a mainly black school. We shall see.
UPDATE: This morning Rachel Dolezal stepped down. I think it was the right decision. Her situation was a distraction to the cause. I also agree with this statement below, She just should have been honest. I could see how she want want to be considered black, be pushed in that direction because she was white and wanted to be in the black community, world. Still, you need to be honest. I don't identify with my bio mom. Still, I admit she is my bio mom. My face looks like her face. My skin and eye color are a little similar to her skin and eye color. I do state that my maternal grandmother is my "real" mom as she raised me. I identify more with my grandmother in regard to culture, ethics and morals.
"It's not about race; it's about integrity," member Kitara Johnson said. "If you're a leader, you have to have integrity. She clearly lacks integrity. The other piece is credibility."
I heard about the Rachel Anne Dolezal story few days ago. I was in bed because of my back so I couldn't research it easily. I was finally able to take a better look at this case.
I don't have a problem with a white woman being interested in African studies, African art, being heavily involved in the African American community and civil rights. I fully support all of this. I personally feel she just shouldn't have lied about her bio family. We don't pick our parents. We do pick our spouse, friends and the rest of our family. My bio mother was not a good person but I still admit she was my bio mother.
My two best friends growing up were both black. I can understand how you could identify with your friends. I can also understand wanting to be part of that culture. I would try to make my hair like my friend and she'd try to make her hair like mine. That is natural for kids, teens and young adults. Even comedian Cho said she went through a phase where she dressed, acted and spoke like a Puerto Rican. Some kids in my high school would talk black, got 'fros and totally acted as if they were from the projects when they were from Beverly Hills.
As I take a look into Rachel's life she has done a lot of good for the African community and civil rights. I did read where she went to a mainly black college and was resented by other students for being white. People didn't take her seriously in that school. I could see why she might want to prove herself to others as a proponent of African Americans.
Below is Rachel Anne Dolezal's family tree. As far as I can see she was born with German, Czech ancestry. The tree goes back farther but it won't fit here easily. If there is any American Indian, it must be on the mother's side.
I hope she releases a statement saying her bio parents are who they are but she identifies as black. I don't have a problem with it. I do see black people who are upset with this. I guess they feel she hasn't truly felt what it is like to be a black person so how can she identify as black. Living in the black community with black friends, husband, son, relatives can easily make one feel part of that community. She's probably standing right by her black friends when they are attacked with racist comments. I've seen white people racially attacked just for being friends with black people. White people are more likely to attack white people who marry or have children with black people. That type of racism, discrimination, hate is real.
|Rachel Anne Dolezal Moore, Lawrence Albert Dolezal, Ruthanne Schertel Dolezal, Joshuah, Joshua, Esther "Luna" Dolezal, Zachariah Dolezal, Ezra Dolezal, Izaiah Dolezal, Libby Montana, Spokane, Washington, black, white, race, color, identity|
Hopefully we can all learn from this situation. You don't have to be black, white, Asian, gay, disabled... to identify, sympathize, empathize with people and help who are different than you. I'm an animal activist and I'm not an animal. I don't have to be an animal to identify with the problems facing animals in order to help them.
Mary Cummins of Animal Advocates is a wildlife rehabilitator licensed by the California Department of Fish and Game. Mary Cummins is also a licensed real estate appraiser in Los Angeles, California.
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