OK South Africa is getting incredibly exhausting now. Rachel Dolezal is coming to South Africa and we've just decided to leave if she does.
South Africa will be out of the country during this period. Please try again another time sis... https://t.co/iyY7wiaRRR— Bhut'Khawenze Kaloku (@Sundiata_X) April 6, 2017
For an unknown reason, someone thought bringing Rachel Dolezal to South Africa to talk about non-racialism would be a good idea. When we asked them why, they said they would explain themselves on Friday.
South Africans woke up to a tweet by Dolazel tweeted on Thursday morning that she would be in the country on April 19.
If you're in South Africa 🇿🇦 I hope to see you soon! Seating limited. RSVP to: firstname.lastname@example.org pic.twitter.com/dApU0EQfBO— Rachel Anne Doležal (@RachelADolezal) April 5, 2017
The Huffington Post South Africa contacted Clive Ramalaine at Tsiloab Holdings, one of the companies in the poster Dolezal included in her tweet. When asked why Dolezal was coming, Ramalaine said they would have an official briefing on Friday through a media company explaining all the details of the event.
Dolezal first made news in 2015 when it was discovered she had been pretending to be black for nearly a decade. Dolezal said she identified as black, and still insists she is.
This surprising event hosting Dolezal comes just over a week since The Huffington Post U.S. Black Voices senior editor, Lily Workneh, asked that people stop giving her a platform. In the article, Workneh listed a number of reasons including that focusing on Dolezal was pointless and took away from the very real suffering of black people.
Whether in the U.S. or South Africa, the narrative is similar. Black people's experiences are not the same as those of white people, and Dolezal is a symbol of a "colour blind" attitude.
Not only does Dolezal bring forth dangerous concepts on race, she also propagates the denial of transgender identities and experiences. Just last week the world observed International Transgender Day Of Visibility. In South Africa, trans people are still fighting very hard to have their rights recognised by government and to have their rights seen as human rights by general society too. Any rhetoric that denies the real experience of transgender people is dangerous, just like this article in the Daily Beast outlines. Dolezal is not "trans-racial", and this is not the same as being transgender.
Of course people on Twitter expressed their annoyance with this visit by Dolezal.
Home Affairs needs to declare Rachel Dolezal an undesirable person. Whoooo! pic.twitter.com/uBQAVEpdBb— Gugulethu Mhlungu (@GugsM) April 6, 2017
Rachel Dolezal is coming to Africa to tell Africans about being black? Uwoah mntakaFather pic.twitter.com/f9uSeP4Epb— This Womxn (@_Lethukwazi) April 6, 2017
Mara this country, even this Rachel Dolezal is coming here. pic.twitter.com/IYwwt8bgCb— Sandile M. Khowane (@Sandilekhowane) April 6, 2017
Rachel dolezal said she's coming to SA coz we are more accepting of this non racial what what...she literally said this in an interview pic.twitter.com/H64CD9PEZU— Rude.soulRue (@RudeSoulRue) April 6, 2017
Can't believe someone invited Rachel Dolezal to come speak to people. What the heck? pic.twitter.com/mTXyjBcGcn— Nombulelo Fox (@iLove_MissFox) April 6, 2017
Rachel Dolezal is obsessed with faking blackness but is coming to SA to speak about non-racialism. If you're non-racial why you faking black pic.twitter.com/wjre4pCM78— S'mamkele Mandewo (@Sima_Thingz) April 6, 2017