Belle of Liberty

Letting Freedom Ring

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Heavy Lies the Head

The Miss U.S.A. Pageant has apparently added a new category to their criteria for selecting their winner: courage.

Yes, I must hand it to newly-crowned Miss U.S.A., Rima Fakih, a Lebanese immigrant and Miss Michigan entrant in the contest. Pageant officials are uncertain, but they believe she is the first Arab-American contestant to win the title.

Not much on history, they also didn’t mention whether she was the first immigrant to win the contestant. That would be okay. We may not and should not be electing immigrants to the highest office of the land, but why shouldn’t legal immigrant citizens be able to vie for this beauty contest crown?

Miss U.S.A. is without question one beauteous young lady. Her intelligence, as judged by her answer to the Intelligence question – not so much. She believes contraceptives should be covered by health insurance because they’re an “expensive.” “controlled substance.”

Meanwhile, runner-up Miss Oklahoma, Morgan Elizabeth Woolard, paid the penalty for her intelligence and independence, qualities the pageant considers mutually exclusive. Because she supported Arizona’s newly-minted illegal immigration law, she was relegated to second place.

Still for an Arab-American woman to “strut her stuff” on camera in front of millions of people on television is extraordinary. It didn’t take long for the news of a pole-dancing video of Miss U.S.A. to surface. A fatwah, denouncing her and condemning her to death, didn’t seem far behind.

Thankfully, for her sake, it hasn’t appeared yet. In fact, the Arab-American community was bursting with pride. The head of Hezbollah gave a mild denouncement of her achievement, saying of parading around in bikinis and revealing evening gowns, “Women don’t do those things in our part of the world.”

No, because if they did, they’d have their throats slit.

It’s a pity she wasn’t asked about her stand on the American Pediatrics Association’s recent mute approval of sending third-world girls back to their third-world countries for genitalia correction.

Or whether, as the first Arab-American Miss U.S.A., she would be the Arab-American ambassadress for education for girls in the Arab world. Or whether she would advocate for women’s rights in the Middle East. But perhaps she’s saving those answers for the Miss Universe pageant, which Miss U.S.A. is automatically eligible for, later in the summer.

Meanwhile, the pageant's considerable lack of judgment in choosing and analyzing intelligence questions is appalling.  Clearly, freedom of speech is not on their minds.  In the Miss U.S.A. pageant, there is a right or wrong answer, and that answer had better fit within their politically-correct parameters.  Miss U.S.A. hopefuls need to give their most submissive, bobble-headed responses if they want that crown pinned to their pretty little heads.

Miss Oklahoma was punished for her honest and articulate answer. Miss Michigan was crowned for her barely articulate and woefully inaccurate reply. But no matter, because this is a beauty pageant after all.  All that matters is appearance.

Still, if I were the new Miss U.S.A., I'd sleep with one eye open from now on.

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