Rachel Dolezal, an American civil rights activist and former African studies instructor, recently made an appearance on the Today show to try to stay relevant and talk about her new book, according to New York Daily News.
“I don’t have any regrets about how I identify,” Rachel Dolezal says on the “Today” show https://t.co/svbpNwCVUd pic.twitter.com/IbaAdGG3X3
— The Boston Globe (@BostonGlobe) April 12, 2016
One year after the controversy, the white woman turned black activist is still talking. She appeared on the Today show to talk about her new book and to deny any regret over the race controversy which had forced her into resignation last year. On the show, Rachel Dolezal was asked about the things she claimed to be true but were proven false, an example of which is her passing herself off as a black woman for years. Needless to say, Dolezal did not cave in.
Rachel Dolezal responded to the question about how she felt about the false statements she previously made about herself and her cultural identity.
“I’m not sure what you’re referring to with that, but definitely I don’t have any regrets about how I identify. I’m still me, and nothing about that has changed.”
— Lawrence Bush (@BushLawrence) April 12, 2016
Savannah Guthrie, the anchor for the program, pressed on, asking her about how she allowed people to believe that she was born black. In recent memory, she acknowledges her white lineage, but she chooses to identify herself as a black person.
Rachel Dolezal replied to the statements of Savannah Guthrie.
“I do wish that I could have really owned, given myself permission to really name and own the me of me earlier in life. I mean, it took me almost 30 years to get there.”
With notoriety like hers, Dolezal admits that it is a bit hard to go to places like the grocery store. While she was on the show, she gushed about her newborn son and also plugged her TED talk, as well as other speaking engagements she will be participating in. Also mentioned during her appearance on the show was her new book on racial identity.
— Wodek Szemberg (@wodekszemberg) April 25, 2016
Rachel Dolezal’s appearance on the show was inevitably mentioned on Twitter, with many people attempting to make Dolezal a trending topic once again. According to International Business Times, Rachel Dolezal dislikes Twitter due to the shaming that had happened to her last year over her choice to identify herself as a black person.
Initially, she had a positive view of Twitter: but that was prior to her racial identity scandal becoming a worldwide trending topic.
Rachel Dolezal spoke on how she initially saw Twitter, saying that it “felt good” to use Twitter as a platform to connect and network with people around the world who shared the same interests, causes, and goals.
“I saw Twitter as a tool for education, awareness and networking — a platform that could organize activism and positive change.”
— Your Black World (@YourBlackWorld) April 29, 2016
Dolezal also spoke on how that perspective changed due to one traumatic moment in her life, saying that her “relationship with Twitter” changed from one of love to one of hate after her personal life and racial identity came under fierce media scrutiny. Describing Twitter as something that once was a “casual and positive place,” Rachel Dolezal said that it soon became “a space where I was mocked, bullied and even threatened.”
Dolezal went on to say that she now has a somewhat neutral opinion of Twitter, thinking that it is now only as good as the people who use it and that it can be a tool to empower or destruct, depending on how it is used. Ultimately, Dolezal believes that it is up to Twitter users themselves to bring a dose of humanity to the social media platform and to not use it as a weapon of destruction.
[Photo by AP Photo/Nicholas K. Geranios]