How about this? There actually was an African-American SF writer in the 1950's named Benny Russell. Elements of his life were shown to Ben Sisko by the prophets but the details were changed to suit their purposes. After all, it's been established that they can make you see whatever they want you to see.
This should satisfy everybody. I call it the Shimmer Solution. (It's a floor wax and
a dessert topping.)