Raquel Evita Saraswati, a 39-year-old Hijab wearing woman who represented herself as a Muslim woman of color, faced backlash after her mother revealed that she was actually 'white'. Saraswati, who was born as Rachel Elizabeth Seidel, is the chief equity, inclusion and culture officer of an NGO, American Friends Service Committee.
Mother Says Saraswati Lying About Her Ethnic Background
Saraswati, who is seen wearing a hijab, is a known Muslim activist who for years has encouraged people to believe that she is a woman of color.
Speaking to The Intercept, who revealed the identity of the 39-year-old, Carol Perone, Saraswati's mother, said that the activist is "as White as the driven snow."
Calling Saraswati's claims of being a woman of color, including Latina as well as of South Asian and Arab descent, "nonsense," Perone said that she calls her Rachel. "I don't know why she's doing what she's doing. I'm as White as the driven snow and so is she. I'm German and British, and her father was Calabrese Italian. She's chosen to live a lie, and I find that very, very sad," added the distraught mother.
According to the outlet, Saraswati converted to Islam in high school. "Saraswati's complexion is significantly lighter than the bronzed look in more recent photographs. Another relative who asked not to be identified confirmed that Saraswati is white," the report read.
Social Media Wants Saraswati Fired
Soon after the reports about 39-year-old faking her identity emerged, there were a lot of reactions on the social media. "Raquel Evita Saraswati of AFSC, who was born Rachel Elizabeth Seidel, isn't racially diverse ethnically as she claimed. Her mother says she has German and English ancestry from her mom's side and Italian from her father's, not Arab. Race baiting continues to be profitable," tweeted a user.
"Y'all heard someone was named Raquel Evita Saraswati and believed it was a real? A hijabi named Saraswati who also happens to be a Latina? No alarm bells whatsoever?" read another tweet.
"America is so racist that progressives keep pretending to be minorities for the career benefits," wrote a user.
"It is perfectly fine to be white! It is perfectly fine to be white & believe in equality. I know plenty of good people who do it every day. Stop this bullshit!" expressed a user.