I wonder if I would not have done better if I were a TEENAGER answering this *stupid & obvious* leading question on national t.v., in the middle of a contest for a scholarship honor I’d been working seven years straight for, worth $5000 in scholarship money that would seed other financial support, and I had to answer this question after standing around in high heels and a heavy beaded gown, some of my underwear glued on for the occasion, under hot lights, dressed and made up like I was ten years older than I really am.
It’s not that beauty contest contestants are subhuman, it’s that the contest situation is DEHUMANIZING. I still remember to thank God every once in awhile that he killed the Miss BYU contest in 1986.
Blonde jokes are always anti-woman. Oh ye of fabulous red hair, they’re running you down too.
Johna, while your point is well taken, I can’t help thinking there are more deserving sources for your sympathy — for example, the underpriveleged fifth of Americans who don’t have access to maps, as well as the people of South Africa and The Iraq.
-Zina W. — remembering a job interview at the age of 23 in which I was asked what Manila was (it was for a library job, so they asked stuff like that,) and answered “It’s a kind of envelope — and I think it’s also the capital of a country.” (My hair is light brown, and I remembered as I was leaving the interview that it’s the capital of the Philipines.)
This had me cringing in my chair. Cringing at the awfullness of it all.
Johnna- she chose to be there. Dehumanizing or not, no one made her go there and stand around in high heels and glued on underwear for scholarship money. There are scads of other ways to get money for college- I did it, and I never did have to enter a beauty pageant. Some women/girls/females just like that sort of thing. It’s beyond me, but they do.
She was on the “Today” show yesterday and talked about it. She was humiliated, but had the strength to come out and say, “I made a mistake, I was nervous and didn’t hear the question right, etc etc” and then she came up with a relatively decent answer to the question. I think that took guts!
True confessions only come as an anonymous poster. I have got to be the only person in the universe who saw this and thought… “Gee, what my teenage daughter really needs is a pagaent or two to enter?”
Seriously, were you awed at her composure during what she had to know was the worst answer in the history of interviews? And her ability to hold her head up on the Today Show afterwards? My daughter has intelligence and a testimony and she’s a terrific kid. But I think she would be more well-balanced if she were comfortable enough in her own skin to walk around in a bathing suit and if were comfortable with public speaking. And she wouldn’t have the worst showing ever… that position has been taken. So, now I find my former feminist leanings quieted by a desire for my dd to have all that confidence.
With broken speakers on my dinosaur of a computer, I can only speculate about the question and answer. I entered a pageant in high school 19 years ago. It was $50 to enter, I paid out $100 more in a dress and the stupid aerobics costume we all had to wear. No bathing suit, I have some dignity thank you very much. The reason I did it was there was an academic award for $300 based solely on GPA. I had the highest GPA so I knew I was a shoe in to net about $150 with the possibility of getting more. I ended up with $800 out the whole thing, along with some strange memories of learning how to wave “properly”, and some photos that don’t even look like me.