‘This decision reflects an important cultural shift.’
Via Flickr user (cc) Grant Gravitt
Last September, after severing its ties with now-presumptive GOP presidential nominee, Donald Trump, NBC and Univision dropped its broadcast of the Miss Teen USA Pageant. The broadcast giants’ decision came after Trump’s incendiary tirade against Mexican immigrants during his campaign announcement speech in June 2015. Now, after Trump has sold the pageant to WME-ING, its new owners have ditched one of its most sexist competitions.
This Miss Universe Organization, which also runs Miss Teen USA, just announced that it’s trading its swimsuit competition for one involving athletic wear. Although the decision to stop sexualizing young girls seems like a huge no-brainer, a move towards embracing healthy lifestyles and athleticism is a positive nonetheless. The reigning Miss Teen USA agrees with the decision. “I have been an athlete my entire life,” Katherine Hail says. “As a member of a softball team and a competitive dance team, I spend a lot of time in athletic wear.”
“This decision reflects an important cultural shift we’re all celebrating that empowers women who lead active, purposeful lives and encourage those in their communities to do the same,” Miss Universe president Paula Shugart shared in a memo. “Our hope is that this decision will help all of Miss Teen USA’s fans recognize these young women for the strong, inspiring individuals they are.” Now, if the pageant started embracing girls of all body sizes it would be making an even greater step towards recognizing young girls for being “strong” and “inspiring individuals.”