Hey everyone! Happy Monday!
So in case you were busy watching some Sunday Night Football, yesterday night a new Miss America was crowned. Congratulations to Miss New York Nina Davuluri!
And let’s not forget the runner up, Miss California Crystal Lee.
So based on the title of this post, I’m sure you can guess where I’m going with this. But brace yourself, I’m about to discuss a whole lot more than what meets the eye. You see, I’ve always wanted to do a beauty pageant themed post, but I never had a reason to. Well thank god it was pageant season, eh?!
First off let me just say I’m pretty conflicted about all this. I’ll start off with why I’m happy. I’m very, very proud that the top 2 contestants for this year’s Miss America were of Asian-American descent. As a proud Asian-American, I’m absolutely proud of these two ladies for working hard and being recognized for their hard work. Just so you know, this is the first time someone of Indian descent has won the Miss America title. FIRST TIME, EVER! I mean, yes I’m proud, but dear god, why is this the first time? We’re in the year 2013 and we haven’t had an Indian winner? Kinda makes you think twice about our country really being as progressive as we think. Just because we have an African-American president, doesn’t mean we’re progressive as a nation. I will admit we are headed in the right direction, but there’s A LOT that we still need to work on.
Second, I’d like to say that I’m very pleased that an Asian-American woman represented California. California is usually known for it’s “surfer” kinda girls with fake tans, beach blonde hair, and blue eyes, but that’s so not an accurate representation of ALL California girls. California as a state is SUPER diverse, especially the Southern California region. We don’t all look like that. There’s always been a pretty good Asian population throughout California, so I’m glad Miss Crystal Lee can represent that.
Third, in general, I’m just proud that Miss America is slowly becoming a different look each year. I mean, I get that this isn’t the first time a white girl hasn’t won, and that’s not the point I’m trying to make. The point I’m making is that there are A LOT of different ethnicity in this country. Miss America should be an accurate representation of an American woman.
Which brings me to my next point – the opposite side of this whole premise I’ve made so far. FYI, I’m about to get real critical up in here.
I hate the idea of beauty pageants. They’re just so outdated and it just PROVES we reside in this ridiculously apparent patriarchal society that needs to go the fuck away. I mean, think about it: a COMPETITION about who’s the most ideal woman? To who’s standards? Not only do these women have to be a specific height and weight, they need to apparently be able to sound “smart” and have some random ass “showy” talent to display for others. And before anyone starts to sound off, I AM aware that the Miss America website doesn’t specify a specific height and weight, but I’m sorry, when was the last time you saw a plus sized woman win? Exactly.
I’m sorry, but EVERY and ANY woman can do this without it being shown on national television. Have you ever heard of a speech and debate competition? You can practice your public speaking skills there. And all the other categories? I mean, swimsuit competition?! Really?? How can you tell me that we’re a progressive nation if we’re seriously judging these young women on their bodies? THEIR BODIES! Jeez, why don’t you just put me in a cage and parade me around like an animal at a zoo?
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying these women don’t work hard. I know they do. I know they are passionate about what they do. And that’s great. BUT, we can do that without competing against one another for a fucking crown. Any person, any size, shape, color, etc. can give back to their community. I think that’s great that all these women want to use their prize money on noble things, but can’t we obtain that money through other ways? Like, without having to strut in a bikini?
The whole idea just baffles me. I believe all woman are intelligent, beautiful, and motivated in her own way. I just don’t like the idea that we need to place a label of “Miss _____” to prove she’s the best. Because frankly, she’s NOT. No one should put a scale on how much you give back to the community and how passionate you are about education and the future. You can do all that shit without investing thousands and thousands of dollars on a fucking ball gown and beauty pageant lessons.
So, now you see the disparity in my feelings for beauty pageants, particularly this year’s Miss America competition. I really do sincerely congratulate Miss Nina Davuluri on her success, but I just think we need to start teaching our young girls that looks aren’t everything. Looks are subjective and we don’t need to be striving to be some sort of “ideal woman.” Fuck that shit. I am not a stick skinny girl and I’m very short, but I’m proud of my body, I’m proud that I can engage in political discussion, and I’m proud I can DANCE! I don’t need to compete in a beauty pageant to realize my potential as a well rounded woman.
I’m not sure who these pageants are for either. I can tell you that they are not for the heterosexual male. We can give a damn about these pageants and the winner seldom represents what most of us call the “ideal woman”. I almost always hear from other guys about the winner, “she’s alright, but she’s not hotter than _____” And just to let you know, ______ would not even qualify for such a competition.
It really looks as if these competitions exist to impress other women. To put it bluntly, there is very little testosterone influencing these events or they would be much different. I remember the last time I tried sitting through a pageant. It was the 2009 Miss Venezuela Pageant and I was bored out of my mind and thought the whole time of how none of these women were hotter than the Venezuela women at the bakery down the street. I remember getting annoyed with my girlfriend for watching so I went down the street to that bakery for some hot chocolate where the women there were also watching.
Yes, men do go gaga over women and we can be inappropriate about it. BUT not these pageant women in these pageant settings. Sorry but this one is not on us.
I’m not blaming men to be the cause of all this and if that’s all you took away from it, then you missed my point. America is still framed by a patriarchal influence. This has been established for centuries, dating back to our founding fathers. It’s not necessarily any man’s fault; I’m just saying that as a man, you already have a male privilege which lets you get away with almost anything. I’m merely raising awareness and I don’t hate men nor blame them in anyway.
First, thanks for your response and keep up the great work on your blog. I think you’re awesome. I hope you welcome this healthy banter.
I saw your other points but I focused on the portion I disagreed with.
Men can get away with almost anything? No… there are advantages to being male but there are MANY disadvantages as well and vice versa. I’m often floored when I hear women say this but at the same time I try not to be too critical because I can see where this comes from. There are all these little responsibilities or expectations that this “patriarchal society” expects of a “man” and women often take these things for granted. If a man fails in these expectations, he is consider not a man or a failure and often ridiculed by women first and foremost. This can be as simple as giving up your seat on the subway (I live in NYC) or more complex like providing for your family. This standard is often relaxed when it comes to women.
Thank you for reading! 🙂 I appreciate the feedback and I do love healthy discussions.
This is why I said ALMOST. I completely understand that there are many different kinds of pressure and expectations there is to what “true” masculinity entails, but you have to understand that at the end of the day, there is still a privilege to being male. And that will always trump whatever minor setbacks and pressures there are to being “truly” masculine.
Of course, I think that’s all bullshit and I believe you should be whoever you want and I try not to give into societal pressures. It’s so much easier to say this than do it though when people criticize everything nowadays. I mean, you apparently can’t even be Miss America if you’re not white. Dafuqqq?! lol.
Your style is very unique in comparison to other peopke I’ve read
stuff from. Thank you for posting when you have the opportunity, Guess I’ll just book mrk this blog.