Thursday, September 09, 2010

Beauty Pageant

School has started again for me, and it's a tremendously strange experience. I know I probably haven't grown, height or weight, since leaving school three years ago, but sitting in those tiny desks again makes me feel like a behemoth.

Anyway, I'm sleep-deprived so rather than blog about my classes, which all seem giggle-worthy fantastic, I'd rather write about something random I stumbled on.

Beauty Pageants are pretty familiar to all people; women dress up, smile nicely,  perhaps do some Little Talent, answer some questions, and then one extraordinarily beautiful women is chosen from the group of extraordinarily beautiful women to be crowned Miss something-or-other.

Recently I've been astounded by the various pageant's history for scandals, however, and the nature of the scandals themselves.Watch for the disappearance of the "married/ with children" scandels and the emeregence of "Wow she's racist/stupid/inept" scandels.

1957 - Mary Leona Gage was revealed to be married and a mother of two. She was officially stripped because her age was 18, instead of 21 as she represented, but the subsequent Miss Universe for that was 17 and allowed to keep her title.

1974- Helen Morgan  was made to resign after it came to light she had a young son, which the rules did not forbid.

1980- Gabriella Brum resigned after it came to light she had ALLEGEDLY posed nude.She did work for playboy after she resigned, however. It remains unclear whether she felt she was free to "do so" or "continue to". 

1984- Vanessa Williams when nude photos that were never intended to be published surfaced, Penthouse bought the pictures without her consent and published them. She was encouraged to resign from the scandal, although she is still recognized as Miss America 1984 and the first African-American Miss America.

1995- Alicia Machado almost got too fat. Serious.

2002- Oxana Fedorova there are rumors suggesting she was pregnant, but she insists she stepped down to finish her law degree, and officially she was removed for "failure to complete her duties". Interestingly, she did defend her PhD thesis the December of her reign, while being promoted to Police Captain, and graduated in May, 2003. No exaggeration, this is just one year. The rest of this woman's life reads like a female Bruce Wayne.

2003- Kari Ann Peniche was stripped of a teen title after posing nude for playboy, which she insists was not forbid in the organization rules and believed would be alright since it "hit the stands" the month her reign ended.

2006- Kate Blair answered "What, to you, is integrity?" with a direct answer about how she considers it to be "all-out ambition to achieve her goals", which is not what is classically thought of as integrity. At least she's determined.

2006- Tara Conner's reign ran concurrently with Kate Blair's; she was involved with cocaine and anti-depressants, hinted at past abuse to blame, and is alleged to have kissed Kate Blair. She was allowed to continue with her reign as long as she attended a rehabilitation facility.

2006- Danielle Lloyd: 2006 not being a good year for pageants, she was stripped of her Miss Great Britain title as a result of her earlier nude shoots, and, it is reported, for a relationship with one of the judges that lasted more than two months. She has since appeared on some reality shows and revealed herself to be a bullying racist douchette so maybe they dodged a bullet there.
2007- Isabel Lestapier Winqvist brought back modesty when she posed for bikini photos that were then published. The pictures skirted the requirement of "no nude photos", but she resigned anyway.

2008- Janina Miller San Miguel's official reports cite that she stepped down because of the loss of her grandfather, but further reading into the incident shows that her famous confusion during a question and answer period where she lapsed into a heavy accent, and gave a disjointed, breathy response, may have led to an unfair environment with too much stress placed on her to learn their "highly favored second language". After this incident a committee offered to "conduct English courses for all Miss Philippines candidates to better express themselves".Celebrating distinct cultures much?

2008- Laura Elena Zúñiga Huizar was not content with just "communication issues". Ms. Huizar was arrested with seven men who were carrying  firearms and $53,000 in cash. She insisted she had been kidnapped by her boyfriend, the leader of the Juarez Cartel. She was stripped of her title, but not found guilty of any charges.

2009- Ris Low was crowned Miss Singapore World in July, but it was revealed September 25th that she had committed credit card fraud in the May of that year. She was allowed to keep her crown, but the next day, she went on record saying she had a confirmed diagnosis of bipolar, and succumbed to pressure to resign September 29th.

2009- The most recent scandel involved Carrie Prejean. She was asked whether she believed all states should support gay marriage and she responded that she was not raised that way. She thought it was "great" that America is a country where people could choose straight marriage or same-sex marriage, but that she had been raised to believe otherwise. I feel the most interesting part is when she says, " in my country...I believe marriage should be between a man and a woman, no offense to anybody out there."

Incidentally there were two incidents where there was controversy caused by the contestants, Miss World or Universe, phoning Howard Stern to promote various events, as they are commissioned to do, and then being soundly mocked by him.

Instead of periodic scandals to ramp up their ratings, I think they should start holding grudge matches. Let the Ladies duke it out, then we'll see who's  Miss Universe.

1 comment:

Roots said...

I never really understood beauty pageants, outside of the trailer park and country bumpkin attempts to show which one of their daughter/girlfriend/sisters were the least ugly.

I exaggerate for jest of course, but I honestly don't see much point in trotting out women to see which has the best appearance and can lie the best. I think we can replace beauty pageants with female MMA matches. I think that would get a lot more attention. After all Beauty is only skin deep, but MMA you feel in your bones.