Rachel Dolezal, the former NAACP chapter president who was accused of pretending to be black, tells TODAY’s Matt Lauer in an exclusive live interview that she identifies as black — something she started doing at the age of five.
“I was drawing self-portraits with the brown crayon instead of the peach crayon,” she told Lauer. “It was a little more complex than me identifying as black.”
On Monday, Dolezal resigned from her position as president of the NAACP’s Spokane, Washington, chapter amid the controversy surrounding her and claims she made about her race and upbringing.
The firestorm began last week after her white parents confirmed that Dolezal, 37, was their estranged daughter, whom they had not seen in years.
Her parents told TODAY that their daughter pretended to be black, claimed to be born in a teepee and made other false claims possibly as a way to “damage her biological family.”
The couple also insisted they never planned to publicly shame their daughter but when a newspaper contacted them last week to confirm Rachel was their daughter, “we weren’t going to lie, we told the truth,” Lawrence Dolezal said. “Rachel is our birth daughter.”
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