Authenticity: Erased & Replaced

A joint event of Institute for Liberal Values and Free Black Thought



A joint event of Institute for Liberal Values and Free Black Thought

Watch the video of this event, held on September 27, 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm ET, here.

On September 27, Institute for Liberal Values and Free Black Thought jointly sponsored a Livestream, Authenticity: Erased & Replaced. Erec Smith, Angel Eduardo, and Zander Keig discussed the problem of authenticity and of being "erased and replaced" for not fitting seamlessly into dominant race and trans narratives.

After writing the piece Stop Calling me White for Having the Wrong Opinions in Newsweek, Angel Eduardo faced criticism from some in the black community. In response to this criticism, Erec Smith, co-founder of Free Black Thought, wrote Black People Who Oppose Critical Race Theory are Being Erased, highlighting the trend of erasing and replacing people whose authentic self doesn't comport with current dogmas about authenticity. Zander Keig, a transsexual man, award winning social worker, and co-founder of the Institute for Liberal Values, understands the difficulty of remaining true to self in an ideologically driven space, and joined Erec and Angel to discuss his own challenges with paradigms of authenticity. 

This event is over but you may watch the recording of it here

The speakers:

Erec Smith is an Associate Professor of Rhetoric at York College of Pennsylvania. Although he has eclectic scholarly interests, Smith primarily focuses on the rhetorics of anti-racist activism, theory, and pedagogy. He is a co-founder of Free Black Thought, a website dedicated to highlighting viewpoint diversity within the black intelligentsia. Smith is a member and moderator for Heterodox Academy and sits on the Board of Advisors for both the Foundation Against Intolerance and Racism and Counterweight, an organization that advocates for liberal concepts of social justice. In his latest book, A Critique of Anti-racism in Rhetoric and Composition: The Semblance of Empowerment, Smith addresses the detriments of anti-racist rhetoric and writing pedagogy based on identity and prefigurative politics and suggests that a more empowering form anti-racism be considered. You can find him on Twitter @Rhetors_of_York & @FreeBlckThought.

Angel Eduardo is a writer, musician, photographer, and designer based in New York City. He is a staff writer and content creator for, and contributes a monthly column for the Center for Inquiry called Searching for Better Angels. Find him on Twitter @StrangelEdweird and at his official website,

Zander Keig is a proud Coast Guard Veteran and an award-winning Social Worker, Educator, and Public Speaker with subject-matter knowledge and experience in developing LGBT diversity and inclusion programs, interpersonal and organizational conflict management training, clinical peer consultation and mentorship, and corporate mental wellness program development. He has served in various capacities: clinician, trainer, speaker, consultant, coach, advisor, facilitator, mentor, networker, educator, leader, and community builder.