Miss USA mocks Miss Vietnam for not being to speak English in racist video
People are divided on beauty pageants. Some believe them to be harmless fun, while other people see them as sexist and demeaning festivals that only serve to objectify women further. But there's no denying that the big beauty pageants, such as Miss World and Miss Universe, for example, are an important platform for women to want to draw attention to the urgent political and social issues that concern them personally.
However, this year a Miss Universe contestant has ended up inadvertently exposing her own prejudice, in an Instagram video that has since gone viral. Most galling of all, the guilty person appears to be Sarah Rose Summers, aka: Miss USA. In the Instagram Live clip, Summers can be seen discussing her fellow contestants along with Miss Colombia Valeria Morales, and Miss Australia Francesca Hung. At one point she went so far as to disparage fellow-contestants Miss Cambodia and Miss Vietnam for not speaking English, (despite the fact that she seems to show no proficiency in speaking their languages herself. ) comments which many have derided as racist and xenophobic.
In the video, Summers can be heard stating: "What do you think of Miss Vietnam? She's so cute and she pretends to know so much English and then you ask her a question after having a whole conversation with her and she [nods]. Miss Cambodia is here and doesn't speak any English and not a single other person speaks her language. Can you imagine? Francesca said that would be so isolating and I said yes and just confusing all the time."
One Twitter-user wrote: "
#SarahRoseSummers represents a Trump American with her racist attitudes and lack of global awareness. Denigrating someone from another country who can't speak English - seriously? Did she just leave the country for the first time? Hope Cambodia wins! ...Also - what other languages does she know? Just English? #MissUniverse2018 Irony of her being at a Miss Universe pageant! #SarahRoseSummers Don't let this woman in a UN building - or any other multilateral agency!"
Another person wrote: "Instead of deriding
#MissCambodia for not speaking English, #MissUSA #SarahRoseSummers should have taken a moment to learn a few words of Cambodian to make the other contestant feel more included? Horrific racism at work here, she should be disqualified."
However, some people were suspicious of the video; believing it to be an elaborate ploy for publicity purposes. One Twitter user chimed in: "Miss USA Sarah Rose Summers [no slashes] is doing it on purpose. She knows she can't win. So she's gaining notoriety to parlay into possible news cycle fame back home. Perhaps get into a reality show."
However, it's not all been doom and gloom. There has been some positive civil rights news to come out of this year's pageant, as Miss Universe 2018 will see it's first ever transgender contestant representing Spain: model and beauty queen Angela Ponce.