Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Trans Miss Canada Universe Contestant Barred From Competition

23 year old Jenna Talackova from Vancouver was one of the 65 women chosen to compete in the upcoming Miss Canada Universe pageant in Toronto this May.  But she won't be on the stage for this pageant because she's been disqualified for being a transwoman.

Talackova started HRT at age 15, had SRS at age 19, has competed in trans and cis beauty pageants and competed in 2010's Miss International Queen trans pageant in Thailand.

The Donald Trump owned Miss Universe pageant system instituted the anti-transgender rule in a response to an incident that occurred during the 2001 Miss Universe pageant held in Puerto Rico in which Miss France Elodie Gossuin was accused of being a transwoman.  

Gossuin took and passed a chromosome test and was a semifinalist for the Miss Universe title eventually won by Puerto Rico's Denise Quinones.

China's Chen Lili attempted to compete in the 2004 Miss Universe pageant being held in Ecuador that year with the backing of the Miss Universe China committee who announced on February 23 she would be their delegate. Unfortunately they reversed their decision two days later citing the transphobic Trump instituted 'natural born female' rule.

However, the Miss Universe pageant rules have never specifically addressed SRS or plastic surgery issues, so this disqualification reeks of anti-trans bigotry.  All the pageant rules state is that you be a citizen of the country you are representing, be aged 18-27 and not be pregnant.

And what do you mean when you say a contestant must be a 'natural born female' especially when your pageant rules are nebulous about plastic surgery or SRS?   How are you defining that in your rules?

The bouncing of Talackova from the Miss Canada Universe pageant sparked an online petition that has at the time I compiled this post garnered over 31,000 signatures.  She's also not giving up trying to be reinstated as a competitor for the Miss Universe Canada pageant because she correctly sees this as a human rights issue.

"I will look to turn this situation into a positive so that other people in a similar situation are not discriminated against in the future." she said in a statement.

And I and others hope you are successful in doing so.

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