'Transracial' white Florida man says he identifies as Filipino

Here We Go: 'TRANSRACIAL' White Guy Says He's Filipino Now

He means no offense, says Ja Du.

Ja Du drives a purple Tuk Tuk, a three-wheeled vehicle commonly used as transportation in the Philippines, to get around Tampa.

Ja Du is transracial, meaning that he was born as a member of one race but identifies with a different one. First, Filipino isn't a race - it's a nationality, one with a violent history of colonialism by Americans and Europeans alike.

In an interview with WTSP, Ja Du claims to have come to the realization of their new adopted ethnic Asian derivative race after learning about Filipino life for years.

He also confessed that he is often binge-watching the History Channel, but nothing has "intrigued" him more than the Filipino history and culture.

If you're thinking this sounds familiar, you might remember the story of Rachel Dolezal.

Many, including de Guzman, have compared Ja Du to Rachel Dolezal, the white woman and former NAACP chapter president who infamously identifies as black.

She was forced to step down after it was revealed she was a white woman. But Dolezal and her defenders say that racial identity is a social construct not based on biology or ancestry.

Ja Du is aware of critiques of the "transracial" lifestyle.

"If someone feels that they feel at home with a certain religion, a certain race, a certain culture, I think that, if that who they really feel inside, life is about finding out who you are. The more knowledge you have of yourself, the happier you can be".

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He insists that his decision has not been taken lightly, even though he has not yet told his family because he thinks they might laugh at him. And while Dolezal received much criticism, Scheckner believes everyone should be more understanding. All they want to do is throw themselves into that culture and celebrate it'.

But, with someone making such drastic changes, she does think they should speak to a professional.

"My mom works with a lot of people who are migrating to the United States; you know, from all over the world". As Ja Du asks, what is the harm?

He also told USA TODAY he identifies as transsexual and is considering changing his gender as well, which he has spoken to his family about.

Your race can make you more marketable and in some cases eligible for certain benefits, jobs and scholarships.

It's not his intention to appropriate anyone's culture, he maintains.

On cultural appropriation claims, Ja Du said he knows that will be a problem, but does not believe he is trying to take advantage of anything.

"I think if you're unhappy with who you are and you change yourself for the better and that makes you happy, you know, go for it".

The term was normally used to describe someone (or a couple) of a certain race adopting a baby of another race.

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