Rachel Dolezal, best known for being the former president of her NAACP chapter, and pretending to the world she was of African-American decent before being found out by a journalist who obtained a picture of her very white parents, has recently again made headlines because she lives on food stamps and has no money, this time has legally changed her name in a Washington court to Nkechi Amare Diallo.
The Daily Mail explains, “Nkechi, short for Nkechinyere, is a name that originates from the Igbo language of Nigeria and means ‘what god has given’ or ‘gift of god.’ Diallo, meaning ‘bold,’ is a last name of Fula origin. The Fula people are a Muslim ethnic group thought to have roots in the Middle East and North Africa, and who are now widely dispersed across West Africa.”
Apparently Dolezal, or Diallo now, has been using her new identity to get more attention to herself that is positive. “She started a Change.org petition in October urging the TEDx organization to re-post one of her controversial speeches from April, 2016 at the University of Idaho. She listed the petition under Nkechi Diallo, never mentioning her real birth name,” according to The Daily Mail.
The Daily Mail Continues:
Shortly after her name change in October, Dolezal employed her newfound identity to garner a small amount positive attention towards herself.
She started a Change.org petition in October urging the TEDx organization to re-post one of her controversial speeches from April, 2016 at the University of Idaho. She listed the petition under Nkechi Diallo, never mentioning her real birth name.
‘Rachel Dolezal’s TEDx Talk on Race & Identity…is still not available online. Please post her talk online immediately. She should not be censored due to her unique perspective. We want to watch this speech!’ the petition read.
Though Dolezal only received 30 of 100 required signatures, TEDx begrudgingly put the video back up on its website.
‘TEDx organizers host events independent of TED, and they have the freedom to invite speakers they feel are relevant to their communities,’ a TED blog read.
‘These volunteers find thousands of new voices all over the world – many of which would not otherwise be heard – including some of our most beloved, well-known speakers, people like Brene Brown and Simon Sinek.
‘What TEDx organizers have achieved collectively is remarkable. But, yes, some of them occasionally share ideas we don’t stand behind.
‘This particular talk has sparked much internal debate. For many on our staff, sharing the talk risks causing deep offense, and runs counter to TED’s mission of ideas worth spreading.
‘But for others, now that the talk has been recorded, refusing to post it would unduly limit an important conversation about identity, and the social underpinning of race -and would be counter to TED’s guiding philosophy of radical openness. There’s no easy middle ground here.’
In 2015, Dolezal, former president of the NAACP’s Spokane, Washington chapter and a part-time professor of Africana Studies at Eastern Washington University, was outed by her parents – as white.
For years Dolezal, 39, had been insisting she was black, even claiming a black man she met in Idaho was her father on social media and styling her naturally blonde locks in traditional African American hairstyles.
She diligently studied the Civil Rights movement, black literature and attended HBCU Howard University for graduate school.
Then, her parents Larry and Ruthanne told a local newspaper that their daughter was, in fact, born Caucasian. The backlash was immediate; Rachel was ousted from her presidential and academic roles and was forced to feed her children with food stamps.