Rachel Dolezal said in an interview Tuesday she “identifies as black.” The ex-NAACP leader says despite the controversy, she would make the same choices if given a chance.
Dolezal, who was born to white parents and is accused of pretending to be black, tells Matt Lauer on Tuesday’s Today show that she began identifying as black when she was only 5-years-old.
“I was drawing self-portraits with the brown crayon instead of the peach crayon, and black curly hair. That was how I was portraying myself.”
When Lauer showed Dolezal a picture of herself at 16-years of age and asked if she was identifying herself as African American at that point in time, she admitted that she was not.
Asked at what point she started deceiving people by not admitting to being a Caucasian woman, Dolezal tells Lauer she never deceived anyone.
“I do take exception to that because it’s a little more complex than me identifying as black or answering a question of, are you black or white?”
According to Rachel Dolezal, when journalists writing about her human rights work started identifying her in media reports first as a biracial, then as a black woman, she just never corrected those reports because it was “too complex.”
Even with the media firestorm that has ensued since reports emerged last week that she has been presenting herself as mixed race when she was actually born to white parents, Dolezal tells Lauer if given a chance, she would still make the same choices.
As the Inquisitr previously reported, Rachel has not always readily identified herself as black. In 2002, Dolezal engaged in a discrimination lawsuit against Howard University in which she claimed she was discriminated against due to her “race, pregnancy, family responsibilities, and gender.” According to the court documents related to the case, the former NAACP leader claimed African American students were shown preferential treatment compared to her.
As NPR reports, Rachel Dolezal, 37, resigned as the president of the Spokane chapter of the NAACP on Monday. In a statement published on the organization’s Facebook page, she said she was doing so because it is in the best interest of the NAACP.
“In the eye of this current storm, I can see that a separation of family and organizational outcomes is in the best interest of the NAACP. It is with complete allegiance to the cause of racial and social justice and the NAACP that I step aside from the presidency and pass the baton to my Vice President, Naima Quarles-Burnley.”
[Image via Today News]