By Lily Smith
In recent news, women in broadcast journalism have been criticized for the way that they look and dress on television. Read more to see how these women and others have responded to these attacks.
On Nov. 1, Demetria Obilor, a Dallas traffic reporter, was degraded for the way she dressed on television in a post on Facebook that stated, "She's a size 16/18 woman in a size 6 dress and looks ridiculous." The woman who posted the statement on Facebook went on to write that she would no longer be watching the news channel for which Obilor reports.
However, after being informed of the post, Obilor took to Twitter with positivity in a video in which she responded to the criticism that she received and thanked all the people that support her. Instead of responding to the post with more negativity, Obilor took this as an opportunity to spread body positivity and acceptance, and after posting her video response, gained tons of support from people all over the country.
Unfortunately, Obilor’s situation is not an isolated one, and many other women working in broadcast journalism have faced similar sorts of criticism. In July 2017, Laura Warren, a pregnant news anchor in Augusta, Georgia, posted a picture in which she was standing at work to her Instagram profile captioned “Friday baby bump update.” After posting, Warren received a phone call from a viewer who criticized her for wearing a dress that was “too tight” to be worn during pregnancy. Warren responded to this comment in a blog post where she highlighted the way that this comment made her feel. She said that she normally, “considers [herself] a confident, pretty secure, independent woman,” but this comment made her question herself and her image.
Similar to Obilor, she attempted to promote positivity rather than to continue to cultivate negativity, saying, “I'm going to say as many nice things as I can to as many people as I can, and I'm going to do it in a dress that fits these beautiful new curves with my 'watermelon' stomach showing.” And, like Obilor, Warren was also flooded with support after publishing her blog post.
Though merely two occurences of many, the stories of these two women prove that as long as women in the field of broadcast journalism continue to gain support, the people that criticize them will be outshined. While these events will probably continue to occur, all that we, as young women, can do is stay positive and support the women who are attacked because in the end, love and support will outweigh the hateful comments that people make towards these women.