Local NAACP reacts to Rachel Dolezal's story
For the first time since her resignation, the woman at the center of a racial controversy spoke out to Matt Lauer on the Today Show.
37-year-old Rachel Dolezal has represented herself as a black woman for nearly a decade despite the fact both of her parents are white.
\"She did a reverse Michael Jackson,\" said Milwaukee NAACP President Fred Royal.
\"I did feel at some point I would have to address the complexity of my identity,\" said Dolezal.
Some argue, it's not so complex. Her parents are white.
\"This to me just reinforces that anyone who goes through these extremes to identify with something other than what they truly are needs some type of assistance professionally,\" said Royal.
She says she identifies as black since she was very young and now even more so because her sons are black.
\"I certainly can't be seen as white and be seen as Isiah's mom,\" said Dolezal.
\"If that explanation was the only one she gave for that new identity it would hold more credibility,\" said Royal.
Royal believes she could have been successful in the NAACP as a white woman.
\"Race is not the issue. It's the treatment, its the disparagement, that is the issue that the NAACP fights for,\" said Royal.
While this is water-cooler talk in most offices, Royal said it isn't what his staff is worried about.
\"From my stand point, the issue facing our community is the 40% black male unemployment rate. The poverty rate for the last twenty years are more dominate conversation at the Milwaukee (NAACP) branch,\" said Royal.
Royal did tell CBS 58, he agrees with her decision to resign. He doesn't feel she would have been able to do her job effectively with all the media surrounding her right now.