Last night, the Miss America Organization named Nina Davuluri Miss America 2014. She’s what you’d expect out of a Miss America, she’s fit, has that mega-watt smile, and is well-cultured and incredibly intelligent.
She’s also the daughter of an Indian immigrant.
And this incensed people that despite the fact that she is what one would expect out of a beauty queen… she was also of Indian descent (even though she’s a full-blown American).
I’m not really about beauty pageants, but this issue clearly caught my eye. The Miss America Organization caught some real backlash on Twitter after crowning Ms. Davuluri. People were outraged that a “Muslim terrorist” could win Miss America (what?!), some said “I swear I’m not racist, but this is America,” eluding that an Indian-American is not an American. Numerous people said that Theresa Vail (or Miss Kansas, and people’s choice winner) was what a real American looks like (blonde hair, fair skin).
As I said, I’m not really about pageantry, but I tip my hat to the Miss America Organization. Davuluri is not only a great candidate and now major role model for people who, ahem… look more like her, but she brought something new to the talent portion of the pageant. Her fusion Bollywood dance was definitely unlike anything I’ve ever seen on these kinds of stages. And I think that kind of diversity is something that should be featured in the national spotlight.
It even made me think that “Hey, maybe someday there will be a Native American winner who can highlight some traditional dance someday?” The level of proud to see a Native woman smoke dance on that kind of stage would be through the roof. And there are definitely Native women who are beautiful enough to be on that kind of stage. If you don’t know who she is, go Google Ashley Callingbull. (Granted, Callingbull is Canadian, but still…)
My sincerest congratulations goes out to Nina. I commend the work she’ll be doing in the future as Miss America 2014. I just wish that I didn’t have to read about people who considered this as a sham…