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Monday, May 22, 2017

What if Rachel Dolezal ''Transracialism'' was a big misunderstanding?



I know, I know, what a clickbait-y title, but I couldn't resist. Let's dive right in: what if Rachel Dolezal really does feel as she should have dark skin? ''Transracialism is silly, it implies there is neurological differences between people of different skin colors and would completely validates racist theories'' I agree with that, hence why I didn't understand Dolezal at first. I don't believe for a second she has ''the brain of a black woman in the body of a white woman''. Oh I didn't mind her doing that transition at all though! If she wants to darken her skin and changes her hair, she is free to do so... It's her life, I don't care. I just didn't like the comparison with transgender people at first, because no matter the conclusion, it was awful. 

If you think race is all social, then who cares what gender or race you identify as? Those people aren't suffering, they just want to do as they please! Which I disagree with. Transgenders have a real disphoria, they didn't choose to feel that way. It's not just a whim. On the other hand, if you give credit to the idea that both transgenders and transracials are biologically driven to feel differently from what their body is, then you validate all racist theories that claim there is actual major neurological differences between people of different skin colors. A frightening possibility. 

I didn't like either options, and felt like I was missing a piece of the puzzle. The other day I was chatting with a very close friend of mine who is a psychotherapist, and I brought that subject up, he made a very good point: how is Dolezal not just a severe case of physical disphoria? I couldn't believe I did not think of it before! When you view it without the race part, but just as a physical attribute, it all makes sense. Many people feel physical disphorias. We all know anorexia, but there is also minor disphorias, like someone with brown hair that feel like they ARE blonde, so they dye their hair to feel better. Or someone with brown eyes that is desperate to get green eyes, so they wear contact lenses... Those don't look like disphorias, but they can be. Many people get minor or major esthetical surgeries, it could be argued that those could be because of a disphoria sometimes. So my theory is that Dolezal suffer from a severe case of physical disphoria, she feels like her skin should be darker, and her hair fuzzier, so she changed her appareance as much as she could to appease her disphoric feelings. The reason most of us don't see it is merely because of all the racial politics... I bet if a psy saw Dolezal he would come to a similar conclusion. 

So, what do you think? Does Rachel Dolezal really suffer from a disphoria, but unrelated to the concept of race? Is she just nuts? Is  she just a snowflake?  I don't think so, I think she is misunderstood, and misunderstood her problem herself because of the concept of race. Anyway, that was my short realization on  the topic, see you next time!-KeLvin

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