Dr. Wendy Osefo: ‘I’m not here to be held to the same standards as white people’

Osefo opened up to theGrio about #EndSARS, the 2020 election and more

Dr. Wendy Osefo made history by becoming the first Black woman to earn a Ph.D. in Public Affairs-Community Development from Rutgers University. Before that, she received a Bachelor of Arts from Temple University, a Master of Arts from Johns Hopkins University, a Master of Science from Rutgers University, and a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) from Rutgers University.

When she joined the cast of The Real Housewives of Potomac, the gig was just another accomplishment on a long list successes. The academic professional, wife, and mother joined the popular franchise this year.

Dr. Wendy Osefo www.theGrio.com
Image via Bravo

“I prayed about it. I asked my board of advisors, my family, the people I love the most. My mom, my sister, my husband — just to make sure that they gave me their blessing,” Osefo told theGrio.

“I feel like we only live once,” she continued. “So I said, why not? You know, this is once in a lifetime. I am true to myself. Who I am is what I am, and so I’m not putting on any airs, so why not?”

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Dr. Osefo uses her ever-growing platform on and off-screen to empower causes and share information with her followers.

During the election cycle, the award-winning researcher shared political commentary as a guest on news networks such as Fox News, and encouraged her followers and fan-base to vote in various posts and uploads.

“This election is going to be one of the most consequential elections of our lifetime,” she remarked to theGrio. “There is so much that is going to sway our way of life just based upon this election. So it’s incumbent upon us to vote. One of the highest forms of advocacy is being civically engaged. You can’t complain about the things that are happening within your community, within your government if you are not engaged in the electoral process. Doubly when you do vote, you then have a stake in order to be able to hold the elected official accountable.”

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The Nigerian-born wife and mother also recently spoke about how the #EndSARS movement in Nigeria is connected to the #BlackLivesMatter protests in the U.S.

“I am Nigerian. I was born there, and what is going on in Nigeria with end SARS movement, now that has been transitioned to end SWAT movement needs to be amplified. So many people in Nigeria were a part of the Black Lives Matter movement when George Floyd died. I had cousins in Abuja, in Anambra state who were protesting for what happened here in the States,” she said.

“When a police officer pulls you over, they don’t ask what ethnicity are you? They don’t ask, you know, what country of origin are you? They see my black skin. When they see my husband, they don’t know he’s Nigerian. They see his black skin. So we’re all in this fight together, whether you are from the continent of Africa, whether you’re from the Caribbean or whether you were born in the United States, we are all fighting a fight together.”

Osefo also spoke to theGrio about the controversial comments she made about the fight between her RHOP castmates Candiace Dillard and Monique Samuels.

“We should be able, as Black women, to act how we want to act because we don’t need to sit here and act a certain type of way just to appease a population,” she told theGrio.

What I am saying is for those people who are saying, well, there are white people who fight on TV, how come they’re not criticized? I don’t care about white people. I’m not here to be held to the same standards as white people. I’m talking about Black people,” she continued.

“I understand that there’s white people on TV who act out. Absolutely. There’s every race on TV that acts out, absolutely. But on The Real Housewives of Potomac, the show that I am on, I’m not comparing you to nobody because I want us to be the best that we can be.”

The Real Housewives of Potomac plays on Sunday nights at 9 p.m. E.T.

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