Rachel Dolezal “identification” as a black woman has been the subject of headline since the curtain was pulled back on her ruse. Creating a polarizing topic of whether or not a person can be “transracial,” the now-national news story has left garnered an array of reactions from the masses, from anger to plain confusion. Now, hip-hop artists are dropping off their two cents. Speaking with Rolling Stone, Talib Kweli weighed in on Dolezal, referring to her plight as offensive. Killer Mike also appeared on The Nightly Show to discuss the new phenomena.
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“She’s said she identifies as black. Cool story, but that’s not a real thing – because at any time, she could go back. That is a privilege that people of color do not have. You cannot just jump back and forth between those worlds,” Talib said. “It’s very disrespectful to the people of color that she claims to identify with to say something like that. When you say something like that, you are not identifying with us, at all, in any way, shape, or form.”
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Talib also discussed Dolezal’s work as president of the Spokane chapter of NAACP, writing that working for the organization “doesn’t prove you’re not an asshole.” The rapper/activist also discussed comparisons to Caitlyn Jenner, negating any comparisons of the two. He concluded that Dolezal is a detractor from the movement. Killer Mike, who approached the situation from a lighter standpoint, also expressed his views.
“That’s the mall tan. ‘Cause I live in a white suburb now, I see 50-year-old white moms who wear True Religion jeans. They’re all just basketball orange,” “I couldn’t be mad at her until I found out she was in Spokane. Ain’t no pressure happening in Spokane. They had to import the black people for the NAACP.”
Talib, who separated Dolezal from the black movement, cited her deceiving tactics as a signifier of her being a danger to the cause.
“When you lie; when you’re saying your adopted brother is your son; when you’re suing Howard one year for saying you’re too white, then saying people hung nooses at your door the next year – that’s crossing the line,” Talib said. “You’re not a friend or an ally to the movement. You’re an enemy. Maybe you’re not as dangerous an enemy as killer cops, but you’re not down with us at all.”
Read Talib Kweli’s full essay on Rachel Dolezal here.