Rachel Anne Dolezal is best known as the former president of the Seattle, Washington chapter of the NAACP that was outed as a caucasian. The revelation was strengthened by an announcement from her mother, complete with photos, of the complete lack of African American roots in the heritage of the woman. Living under the pseudonym, Nkechi Amare Diallo, she managed to also acquire a job as an instructor of Africana Studies and was only discovered as a fraud after filing complaints stating she had been the victim of hate crimes.
Most people would hide away after being so publicly proven as the queen of cultural appropriation but not Dolezal. She publicly acknowledged her white heritage yet still insists that she identifies as black. To further belabor the point she recently set off for South Africa to give a talk at the University of Johannesburg about non-racialism.
Speaking at the Joburg Theatre, Dolezal stated, “But I do believe that we can face that race was created by racism‚ by the energies of oppression‚ by the need to classify people in order to leverage power and privilege.” Her talk did little to bring the people of South Africa (from any heritage) over to her side of the discussion. Many were confused by her lecture and angered with the woman that claims to be sensitive to the experience of blacks without realizing how insulting it is for her to continue to profit from her lies.
Dolezal may state that her intentions are to eliminate the distinction of separate races because she believes it is something fabricated to separate the classes and control people. However, many see her trip as nothing more than a money-making effort as she attempts to prevent her own personal financial crises. Many news sources are printing reports of her looming homelessness and her attempts to repair her reputation. This visit to South Africa comes on the heels of a U.S. book tour where she promoted the supposed non-fiction work about her experiences. Its title, “In Full Color: Finding My Place in a Black and White World does little to disprove her complaint that the title “transracial” was not one she gives to herself but was placed on her by the media.
Regardless of how she views the trip, what she was paid or why she felt the talk was necessary, very few supported her efforts. Social media was buzzing with anger, frustration, and disbelief when the trip was announced. Local South African media from newspaper accounts, TV interview shows, and radio programs all denounced the visit and were very clear in their desire that Dolezal remains in the United States in the future.