Embarrassing Attention for my Hometown

During the lunch hour today, Sidney and I met up at a local burrito place for lunch. We got our food, sat down, and gazed up at one of the televisions. The TV was set to a national news channel and sure enough, the hot story of the moment, which just happens to take place in my hometown, was up on the screen. The screaming headline taking up the lower third of the television read “NAACP Leader Resigns.”

Ah yes, the curious case of Rachel Dolezal. For those who don’t know (and I wish there were more of you) Dolezal was the President of the Spokane NAACP chapter. She recently came under fire because she was caught doing something dishonest. While the unraveling of her scheme played out, her biological parents came forward with some interesting news. The mom and dad said that Dolezal did not have one ounce of African blood in her. The former NAACP leader had claimed for a long time on official documents that she was part African-American.

This whole ordeal has turned into a bizarre tale of twists and turns, one that we will undoubtedly see on Dateline a couple years from now. Catching the curiosity of so many is that Dolezal didn’t just identify as black on forms, she also tried to alter her appearance to look black and referred to herself as black on social media.

Rachel Dolezal as a girl and then what she looks like currently.

Rachel Dolezal as a girl and then what she looks like currently.

We now live in a society where you can pretty much be anything you want to be when it comes to gender or race. Agree with it or not, it is where we are. Because of this, I won’t condemn Dolezal for trying to portray herself as black. However, I will call her out for what she did to draw attention to her in the first place. You see, the woman has made a career of staging fake hate crimes against her. She will send hate mail to herself, disguising it as anonymous vile that was directly sent to her because of her “African” heritage. This past time she attempted the scheme she got sloppy and investigators jumped in. Her parents then emerged with her secret.

The lies of Rachel Dolezal have impacted many. A large number of people probably have serious gripes against her. My only trivial complaint is that she is defacing the name of my hometown. If I walk inside a restaurant 3,000 miles away and they happen to be talking about Spokane, it better be about the Gonzaga basketball team or some kid doing well in a geography bee. I don’t want to eat lunch over some compulsive liar/attention-seeker who is making the Lilac City a laughing stock.

When I return to Spokane in ten days, I wonder if I will bump into her at the airport. For some reason I don’t think she will be sticking around town for that much longer. Best of luck to her as she gets her life back together but I am really rooting for this story to run its course so Spokane can save face. Don’t Blink.

3 thoughts on “Embarrassing Attention for my Hometown

  1. It hit in my hometown too. She’s from Troy, MT. Her folks who still live their have been a big part of the story.

    • Hi Todd – Great to hear from you! Funny that you mention this because Mike Williams commented as well through Facebook (I remember you telling me that you and him grew up together, and, coincidentally, both became photographers). Yes, I can’t imagine the scrutiny Troy is going through.

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