My happy-clappy hometown of Spokane WA is in the news again for another stupid reason besides that idiot representative of ours, Cathy McMorris-Turniphead-Rodgers.
It’s the terrifying case of the black white girl. Or, the white black girl, whatever. OMG, what a national kerfuffle!
Here’s the bare bones of the incident. For nearly a decade, Rachel Dolezal, who heads the NAACP chapter in Spokane, Washington, has claimed to be African-American. From 2008 to 2010, she was a leader of the Human Rights Education Institute in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. In July 2010, Dolezal resigned from Human Rights Education Institute in Kootenai County, and stated to KREM 2 News that “she had been the target of discrimination.” Dolezal stated on September 29, 2009, to KXLY that she had become a target of racism after she recently woke up to find a noose on her front porch. Dolezal’s biography on Eastern Washington University’s website states that while living in Idaho “at least eight documented hate crimes targeted (Rachel) Dolezal and her children.” The subsequent police investigation did not bear it out.
Lemme think. Six years ago Dolezal claimed something that may or may not be true, since when it comes to racial hate crimes, I am not 100% believing one damn thing that the police in Idaho tell me. I guess either making these claims isn’t a crime, or claims were never made, because nothing happened.
In fact, that is the complete modus of this whole tornado-in-a-ketchup-bottle. NOTHING HAPPENED. Dolezal went to work for the NAACP, an outfit which is primarily, but not always, associated with helping black people struggle against the constant, venomous racism of American culture. I find that rather admirable. Who cares if she’s black or white, if she does good work for the community?
But I forgot. This is America, where practically all our immediate first impressions of a person are based on what frequency of light is bounced off his or her skin, a reaction inherited from the legendarily dysfunctional American South which has permeated our entire national culture. And, instead of being allowed to die a natural death, racism has been co-opted as yet another tool of manipulation by corporations and big business, to give the masses something to focus on that isn’t the outrageous malfeasance of exactly those corporations and big businesses.
Ask yourself: Why has this turned into such a huge effing deal? I’ll tell you why. Because the giant corporate masters of American media sniffed out a great opportunity to rile up a bunch of knuckle-draggers and stoke outrage over black people for doing something that isn’t approved of by white people, thus making white people feel more “different” from black people than they actually are. Divide and conquer: does it ring a bell?
Does it matter that Dolezal’s hide is pink and not brown? Not one whit! Clearly she self-identifies as culturally black, and that is some variety of the ultimate crime to a fundy paleface with the mark of the Deep South upon his or her immortal soul. You can thank CNN and ABC and the New York Times and the rest of the Big 6 media news predigestion vats for getting you all pissed off about this. Not to mention her fundamentalist Christian family, who, being of a tradition which really hates people stepping out of line with fundamentalist Christian norms, decided to blow up Dolezal’s life.
Lemme think. George Zimmerman pretended to be a cop and KILLED SOMEBODY, but that’s okay. Eminem has made zillions of dollars pretending to be a black rapper. Men are becoming women, women becoming men, and that’s fine, because gender is fluid. Why can’t race be fluid too? Why is this a problem? Nobody got hurt. Nobody made money off it. Actually, Dolezal was by all accounts a conscientious worker and did good things for the community.
This is only a big deal because somebody is manipulating you into thinking it is. And the reason they are manipulating you has nothing to do with Rachel Dolezal, regardless of how convenient a whipping-girl she is. The proper question here is not “Is she black or is she white?” It is “Why does it matter?”
Follow the money – straight into the maws of the Big 6, Fox Fake News, Limbaugh, and the rest, who have all played a little drum solo on your amygdala and made you mad about fairness, equality, and the American flag. Even though none of that has anything to do with NAACP leader Rachel Dolezal, who had choice words for those questioning her ethnicity: “I don’t give two s**ts about what you think.”
Well said, Ms. Dolezal.