Miss Universe: Why Do We Still Have Beauty Pageants?

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Why Do We Still Have Beauty Pageants?
The crown, the swimsuits, the costumes. It all feels like we're backtracking.

Women have come a long way since the inequality of the 1920s. So, why on earth are beauty pageants still so popular?

Over 5.50 million viewers tuned into Miss Universe last night. And while the competition claims to be much more than beauty pagent, an event that originated 92 years ago, we all know that's what it is and what it enforces.

 

The cheesy poses, the evening wear, the fake tans and that diamond crown — as much 'moderninization' as this event has taken on in recent years, it's still largely outdated and still perpetuates superficial beauty.

Participants are coached, trained, and then judged, on everything from the way they walk to the way they speak. What's modern about that?

Even as viewers we objectify contestants. We judge and expect them to look and act certain way: Sexy but innocent.

The outdated virgin mentality still holds strong in beauty pageants all across the board. In Miss Universe, contestants must be single.

According to the website: Contestants may not be married or pregnant. They must not have ever been married, not had a marriage annulled nor given birth to, or parented, a child. The titleholders are also required to remain single throughout their reign."

Sure, the Miss Universe title gives young women plenty of opportunities to make a difference in the world, and as winner Olivia Culpo sets out advocate for HIV and AIDS prevention, I'm sure she will. But do we really need to pose half naked in front of millions of people in order to get there?

What do you think about beauty pageants? Empowering or objectifying?

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