Demetria Obilor, a local traffic anchor with ABC affiliate WFAA in Dallas, is making headlines for her inspiring response after a woman body-shamed her on social media.
“I’m waking up from my Friday nap to some controversy, but a whole lot of love,” Obilor, who began working at the station earlier this month, said in a video she posted to Twitter. “The controversy is coming from people who aren’t too happy with the way that I look on television saying, ‘Oh, her body is too big for that dress. It’s too curvy.’ Or, ‘Her hair, it’s unprofessional, it’s crazy. We don’t like it.’”
Obilor told ABC News in a statement that “helping to cultivate confidence and self-esteem” in women and girls “is something that I put my entire heart into.”
“For so long, women have been marginalized and prescribed a narrow-minded concept of beauty. We have to shatter all of that and unite to shape a better, more tolerant world for the future,” she added. “We need to embrace every body type, every color, every hairstyle … at the root of it, we are all human and no one should ever be discriminated against based solely on the way that they look.”
Obilor, who is African-American, also took to the social media platform to address a woman’s recent post on Facebook attacking the way she dressed on air.
“Has anyone seen Channel 8’s new morning traffic reporter? Her name is Demetria Obilor & she’s a size 16/18 woman in a size six dress and she looks ridiculous,” Jan Shedd wrote in a Facebook post that has since been deleted. “I understand that when I watch Channel 8 I’m going to get biased reporting and political correctness, but clearly they have taken leave of their senses. I’m not going to watch Channel 8 anymore.”
Shedd’s post was deleted after it started going viral. Even celebrities shared screenshots of her comment.
Chance the Rapper weighed in, re-tweeting the post to his more than 6 million followers.
Meghan McCain told Obilor she is “absolutely gorgeous” and thanked her for speaking out against body-shaming.
Obilor was never going to let the body-shaming comments get the best of her, instead choosing to rise above Shedd’s commentary by posting her own thoughtful response online, which WFAA later shared on its website as well.
“This is the way that I’m built. This is the way that I was born,” Obilor said in her now viral video, addressing the haters. “I’m not going anywhere, so if you don’t like it, you have your options.”
She then praised those who stood up in her defense.
“I love you right back,” she said. “You know, when you look a little different, people think it’s OK to talk to you a little different. And I’m on TV. I can’t clap back how I want to clap back all the time.”
@DemetriaObilor/TwitterWFAA traffic reporter Demetria Obilor is pictured in this Twitter profile photo.
Obilor said she’s “forever grateful” for the people who told her, “You don’t have to put up with this.”
“We don’t have to put up with this, and we’re not going to,” she agreed. “So once again, just everybody know that I love you, I appreciate you, and we’re in this together.”
Shedd told ABC News she had “no comment.”