In news that might be shocking in any other year but feels right at home in the dumpster fire that is 2020, on Thursday, September 3, George Washington University professor Jessica Krug revealed that she has been pretending to be Black for her entire adult life. In a Medium post titled “The Truth and the Anti-Blackness of My Lies,” Krug reveals that she is neither a Black woman nor “an unrepentant, unreformed child of the hood” as she now infamously wrote in her author bio, but rather a white Jewish woman who was raised in a suburb outside Kansas City. “To an escalating degree over my adult life,” Krug wrote, “I have eschewed my lived experience as a white Jewish child in suburban Kansas City under various assumed identities within a Blackness that I had no right to claim: first North African Blackness, then U.S.-rooted Blackness, then Caribbean-rooted Bronx Blackness.” [Heavy sigh.]
In her mea culpa, Krug lays it on thick, writing that she is “not a culture vulture,” (we thank Krug for leaving Vulture out of this mess) but rather “a culture leech” before proclaiming that she is also “a coward.” While it initially seemed like Krug was coming out as white of her own volition, the New York Post reports that Krug ultimately came clean about her true identity because she was about to get caught, obviously. “She didn’t do it out of benevolence,” tweeted Hari Ziyad, a Black screenwriter, author, and former friend of Krug in a thread on Krug and her deception. “She did it because she had been found out.” Dr. Yomaira Figueroa, an associate professor of Afro Diaspora Studies at Michigan State University, seconded Ziyad’s claims, tweeting, “Krug got ahead of the story because she was caught & she knew the clock was ticking bec [sic] folks started to confront her & ask questions. Do not believe for one second that she would have come out with the truth on her own.”
Krug did not reveal her reasons for coming forward in her Medium post and has not commented on Dr. Figueroa or Ziyad’s accusations regarding her motivations for doing so. She did say, however, that she “should absolutely be canceled.” “You should absolutely cancel me,” wrote Krug, “and I absolutely cancel myself.” Sadly, Krug’s willingness to cancel herself cannot erase the years of lies and deceit that undoubtedly contributed to Krug’s career as an academic to the detriment of actual Black women, but the sentiment is nice. Obviously, the last thing the world needs is a bosom buddy for Rachel Dolezal, but we must admit that Krug would be an iconic guest on Ziwe’s Instagram Live Show.