CNN Contributor: "Rachel Dolezal has a right to be black"

Camille Gear Rich, a CNN contributor to CNN and a professor of law and sociology at USC Gould School of Law, believes that Rachel Dolezal, a white woman who lied about being African American, has "a right to be black."

Rich explained that in an article aptly named, "Rachel Dolezal has a right to be black."

"Dolezal is disturbing for many people because she marks a cultural fault line," Rich writes. She continues, "Like it or not, we have entered into an era of elective race -- a time when people expect that one has a right and dignity to claim the identity of one's choice."
Rich continues, "The central issue that separates Jenner's and Dolezal's choices is deception. Jenner chose carefully how and when she would disclose herself as actually female. Dolezal's involuntary outing was staged by her angry parents who felt left behind as she chose a life associated with being a black person."

She then erroneously claims, "As much as critics try to characterize Dolezal's behavior as a fraudulent choice, sociologists and psychologists know that decisions about racial and ethnic identity are typically not merely expressive, strategic, or apolitical, but are driven by social conditions."

The problem with that statement is that Dolezal identified as white and even sued Howard University for discrimination based on her whiteness, and only "changed" her race when she saw she could benefit.


Founder and editor of the Social Memo

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