Well the difficulty comes when race and culture (mostly) coincide as is the case of US blacks. Black might be a racial category on the census form but at ground level I’d argue that it’s also a cultural category that some racially Black people in the US do not belong to (and some non-Blacks arguably do).
US blacks (regardless of social class) follow different socio-cultural norms from social interactions, to gender norms to dress to food to religious observance in ways that wouldn’t be expected if Black were only a racial term…
But the kerfuffle about Dolezal seems very weird because it seems that there are those who simultaneously want race to be an entirely social category with no biological basis but simultaneously want rigid biological boundaries drawn around it.
That makes no sense especially when compared to the CW about sexes which simultaneously manage to be non-biological and essentialist… well technically the attitudes about both race and gender are simultaneously based on non-biological essentialism but with totally different results. Not only that, but of the two they have exactly the wrong order: They say that gender can be changed but race cannot?
This is highly counter-intuitive since sex differences are essential in ways that racial differences aren’t. A mono-racial por non-racial human society is quite possible, a mono-gendered or non-gendered human society is not. Human beings, to use gender activist terminology, are a cishetnormative species. Humans would die out in a generation without cishetnormative sexual reproduction – any other reproduction is artificial, expensive and based on not always reliable technology.
If anything I’m more likely to accept Dolezal’s self-identification as Black than Bruce Jenner’s claim to have become Caitlyn. I have no problem with the transgendered in theory – if anything I admire the way they prioritize free well and human self-fulfillment over the arbitrary biological fact of birth. But one personal pre-condition for accepting Caitlyn is accepting the existence of Bruce (as Jenner themself does) another pre-condition is that I have to be able to accept the self-designation by Dolezal (and Shaun King) that they are Black.
All told, the behavior of US academics in the Tuvel case is beyond reprehensible, those who are afraid to speak out are placing social conformity over truth and lying to themselves which is the quickest way to hell possible. If they want to create torment anddamnation for themsleves then fine, but they are also making it easier for the enemies of education to raze the universities as irrelevant – because they are making universities irrelevant.