Nationwide — 37-year old Rachel Dolezal, a former NAACP leader from Spokane, Washington who was fired and harshly criticized for pretending to be Black, is back in the news. She is reportedly pregnant and says that she is planning to name her unborn son after Langston Hughes, an African American poet, social activist, novelist, and playwright,.
Dolezal has a lot of supporters, but also has angered a lot of people for what many has said being “misleading” and “hiding her true identity.”
Dolezal’s true identity was discovered in June 2015 when her parents told the media that Dolezal was in fact a white woman pretending to be black. Various pictures surfaced to confirm this where Dolezal could be clearly seen as white when she was younger.
Prior to this discovery, however, Dolezal was a Africana studies instructor at a local university, the president of the local Spokane NAACP branch, and she had previously complained to police and local media that she had been the victim of various race hate crimes. As a college student, she also attended Howard University, a historically Black university in Washington, DC.
She once told journalists: “Nothing about being white describes who I am.”
“I just feel like I didn’t mislead anybody; I didn’t deceive anybody,” she continued. “If people feel misled or deceived, then sorry that they feel that way, but I believe that’s more due to their definition and construct of race in their own minds than it is to my integrity or honesty, because I wouldn’t say I’m African American, but I say I’m black, and there’s a difference in those terms.”
She now reportedly works at a local hair salon, doing weaves and braiding hair three times a week.