Every time I read one of these news stories, I cringe.

Recently at the Miss USA pageant, Miss Ohio, Audrey Bolte, was asked the inane question, “Do you think women are depicted in movies and on television in an accurate and positive way? And please give us an example.”

Her equally ridiculous answer was the following.  “I think there are some movies that depict women in a very positive role, and then some movies that put them in a little bit more of a negative role.  But by the end of the movie, they show that woman power that I know we all have.  Such as the movie Pretty Woman. We had a wonderful, beautiful woman, Julia Roberts, and she was having a rough time, but, you know what, she came out on top and she didn’t let anybody stand in her path.”

Really?  Miss Ohio thinks a hooker is a positive depiction of women?

Forget the questions; forget the answers.  Why are these women in beauty pageants even asked questions about how they plan to cure cancer, save the horn-billed whatever, rescue polar bears, preserve the planet, who their role models are, or anything else?  It’s a beauty contest, for Pete’s sake.

In case you don’t remember, here’s Miss Teen USA 2007 answering a question on geography.

I can’t believe the viewing audience is interested in how these women plan to secure world peace or how they plan to stop hunger in Africa.  Just judge them based on their faces, bodies, hair and make-up and let them sashay around the stage in their bathing suits and evening gowns and stop trying to make beauty pageants into something they’re not.  It’s not an intelligence contest – it’s a beauty contest.  And please don’t say a woman’s beauty includes her mind.

Maybe sometimes it’s really about judging a book by its cover.   In other words, maybe “beauty” contests are like the hokey-pokey – it’s really what it’s all about.


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