When Rachel Dolezal parents ratted her out as being white, it left an interesting question. Whether or not it will ever be appropriate for someone to pretend to be another race, or nationality, is an interesting point. She resigned from the NAACP when the her parents broke their silence. The debate on identifying with one’s race, as well as what it is like to be black in this country, is now open for discussion.
She has represented herself as being of three other races, but her biological parents say she is only Caucasian, and they insist that she is lying to everyone for reasons that are unknown. The woman has yet to say anything about her parents allegations, and her true race. There are far fewer Caucasians trying to pass themselves off as being African-American than African-Americans pretending to be white. This is not a huge issue like racism is today, and Dolezal is definitely not the first person to attempt it, but it is how she did it that makes it interesting.
Dolezal inadvertently raised an interesting question to debate over of race relations; however, ones look at the situation of enslavement, and there are true stories of white people who were held and made to be slaves, as well as made-up stories for entertainment purposes. There have been several accounts of Caucasian individuals that were abducted, and sold into servitude as African-Americans.
The awareness of this points to an economic principle which undermines the racial barrier, but they are not quite separate issues. Dolezal has certainly raised an interesting question on race, ethics, and the economic situation of today’s American.
By Katherine Miller-Chichester
Vox.com: The Rachel Dolezal question
Photo Courtesy of Maryland Sierra Club’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License