Verda Byrd has had to spend much of her life dancing across the line between white and black. Byrd, born in 1942 to Earl and Daisy Beagle, was originally named Jeanette. She eventually had to take care of her siblings and was put up for adoption after her mother died from a fall.
Byrd was eventually adopted by a wealthy black couple from Newton, Kansas. After her adoption, Byrd’s name was changed to Verda and she was raised as an only child. She was also led to believe that she was black and not white.
“My adoptive mother, Edwinna Wagner, never told me that she had adopted a white baby,” she said. “She took it to her grave that she had a white daughter.”
Byrd’s story sounds remarkably similar to that of Rachel Dolezal, the woman who was outted for pretending to be black. However, the twist in this story is that Byrd spent her entire life not knowing her true racial identity. Despite the similarities in their stories, Byrd is not in the least bit supportive of Dolezal’s situation.
“She lied about her race,” Byrd said. “I didn’t lie about my race because I didn’t know.”
Despite finding out that she is white, Byrd says that she still considers herself a black woman. It appears that what she believes to differ in her case vs Dolezal is that she was never informed of her situation. She only found out that she was white when she researched her biological parents after reaching her seventies.
“It’s was unbelievable,” said Byrd.
Below is the video of Byrd and her story. Tell us what you think. Does her not knowing differ her situation from Dolezal? Does she now have an obligation to tell the world that she is white, or can she go on assuming that she is a black woman? Would that be fraudulent?
Source: Black Time Travel