June 12, 2015

White woman pretends to be black, Native

By now everyone's heard the strange saga of Rachel Dolezal. Here's the original report:

Black like me?

Civil rights activist's ethnicity questioned

By Jeff Selle and Maureen Dolan
She's risen from North Idaho civil rights champion to positions of power in Spokane as a self-described black woman.

But what if Rachel Dolezal is really white?

Dolezal, chair of Spokane's Office of Police Ombudsman Commission and president of the city's chapter of the NAACP, has made claims in the media and elsewhere about her ethnicity, race and background that are contradicted by her biological parents.

"It is very disturbing that she has become so dishonest," said Dolezal's mother, Ruthanne Dolezal, in a phone interview from Northwest Montana, where Dolezal grew up.
Natives were particularly annoyed by this part of the story:Multiple interviewers have reported that Dolezal told them she was born in a teepee in Montana. The detail appeared in 2012 in a profile for Spokane Coeur d'Alene Living magazine and several times in interviews and features published by EWU's student newspaper.

"That is totally false," Ruthanne said.

Dolezal's mother said she and Larry lived in a teepee for a while in 1974, when they were first married and three years before Dolezal was born.

"That was the end of living in the teepee," Ruthanne said.

Ruthanne said other claims attributed to her daughter in the media are untrue.

Rachel did not have to use bows and arrows to hunt for her own food, Ruthanne said, and she never lived in South Africa or Colorado. Ruthanne said she, Larry and the younger adopted siblings moved to South Africa in 2002, and lived there until 2006. Larry was stationed there as an employee of the faith-based Creation Ministries International.
You can almost see the wheels spinning. She didn't have a plausible way to claim Latina or Asian heritage. But many blacks claim to be a little Native, and she had the whole teepee thing. VoilĂ ...add "Native" to her biography!

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