People On The Internet Rally Behind Dallas Reporter Who Was Body Shamed

"When you look a little different, people think it's OK to talk to you a little different. "

There's still immense pressure to fit into certain rigid standards of beauty in our society and those who don't meet those expectations are sometimes left feeling less than. Women, in particular, are often taught from a young age that the way they look defines their value. Research shows that more than half of girls as young as 6 to 8 think their ideal body is thinner than their current size. And many girls receive comments on their bodies before they're even in high school. In fact, one study found 65 percent of girls receive the first critique of their body before they turn 14.

Too frequently, these negative comments continue into adulthood. Women are subjected to all sorts of body-shaming from people they know, and from total strangers. The situation only gets worse if you're a public figure who appears on TV or in films. 

One Dallas reporter recently experienced this first-hand. 

Twnety-six-year-old Demetria Obilor, an anchor for ABC Dallas, was body-shamed on Facebook by a female viewer. The viewer criticized Obilor's size and the way she dresses on-air. 

She's a size 16/18 woman in a size 6 dress and she looks ridiculous," wrote the viewer. She stated she would stop tuning into the newscast for good because of Oblior. 

The Facebook post has since been taken down, but one Twitter user who spotted it took a screenshot and shared it on Twitter

The tweet caught the attention of Chance the Rapper who helped to bring the body shaming comments to a much larger audience's attention. He didn't add much commentary aside from agreeing that the poster sounded angry, but he did help the tweet go viral. 

In response, many people came to Obilor's defense with messages of support.

Soon after, Obilor addressed the body shamers and controversy in a video she posted on 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,' or 'she's too curvy,' or 'her hair is unprofessional, it's crazy,'" she said. "A quick word to those people: This is the way that I'm built. This is the way that I was born. I'm not going anywhere. So if you don't like it, you have your options." 

But Obilor didn't want to spend too much time giving attention to those negative comments. Instead, she turned her attention to her supporters and thanked them for their kind words. 

"Now to the people who show love, I love you right back. You know, when you look a little different, people think it's OK to talk to you a little different," she said. "We don't have to put up with this and we're not going to." 

She also thanked Chance the Rapper for shining a spotlight on this issue by posting about it on Twitter and shared how grateful she is to have the support of so many — even people she doesn't know personally.

Many people took to Twitter to thank Obilor for her response and share why it's important we talk openly about these issues. Body shaming has become all too common in our culture and it can have a detrimental effect on people's lives, self-esteem, and careers. 

Obilor certainly isn't taking the negative comments to heart, but the situation has given her the opportunity to speak openly about body shaming women of color. 

"When you get older and you're in the news people warn you that, 'Hey, you're going to be under a harsh lens. People are going to critique you, people are going to say mean things about you,'" Obilor told NBC News

But that doesn't mean it's right. "I don't care if a black woman wants to wear her hair straight or in braids, you don't get to say what's professional and what's not professional based on your white standard of beauty," she said. "It's not about my unhurt feelings. It's about what's acceptable in society and how we, as people in the media, we have to make things right."

So, instead of trying to bring people down by making negative comments about the way they look, let's lift them up by celebrating their success.

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