THE GUERRILLA ANGEL REPORT — (UPDATE: Court orders contestant Sheena Monnin to pay damages resulting from her claim the pageant was fixed. See below.) While reputable reports are few, it is clear that one of the contestants — Miss Pennsylvania USA, Sheena Monnin — quit just prior to the end of the Miss USA pageant. The Miss Universe organization is reportedly saying it’s because they allowed trans woman Jenna Talackova to compete. The pageant released the contents of an email from Monnin to the Miss Universe organization the day she quit. This is an excerpt:
” . . . a pageant system that has so far and so completely removed itself from its foundational principles as to allow and support natural-born males to compete in it. This goes against ever moral fiber of my being. I believe in integrity, high moral character, and fair play, none of which are part of this system any longer.”
Reports say that Monnin has changed her story since then and now accuses the pageant of fraud claiming that ‘the top 5 were selected in advance’. The organization however, insists the Jenna Talackova controversy was the reason she quit.
UPDATE: July 7, 2013. Following Sheena Monnin’s 2012 rant against transgender contestants and her claims the pageant was rigged, she was sued by the pageant for defamation. After an earlier ruling by an arbitrator against her, Monnin appealed only to find the judge upholding the earlier decision. Monnin now needs to pay up for her false claims.
From the BBC:
A beauty queen must pay Donald Trump’s Miss USA organisation $5m (£3.3m) for defamation, a federal judge has ruled.
Sheena Monnin resigned as Miss Pennsylvania in 2012 after publicly claiming the contest was rigged.
An arbitrator ruled that her allegations cost the pageant $5m in a lost sponsorship deal.
In a Facebook posting, Ms Monnin stood by her original claims. She also said her legal fees alone topped $50,000 and solicited financial donations.
The legal battle began after Ms Monnin, while competing in Miss USA 2012 last June, claimed that another contestant had learned the names of the Miss USA competitors who finished in the top five, before the show was even broadcast.
That contestant later issued a statement saying that she was only joking.
Trump’s Miss Universe Organization sued Ms Monnin for defamation and an arbitrator ruled against her in December.
She appealed that judgment arguing that the arbitrator had overstepped his authority.
New York district court Judge J Paul Oetken this week rejected her appeal.
Pageant organisers claimed Ms Monnin had resigned not over the results, but because she disagreed with a decision to allow transgender contestants.
Accounting firm Ernst & Young, which tabulates the judges’ scores, insisted during last year’s controversy that the pageant was not rigged.
I wrote this piece on trans people in beauty pageants for the Huff Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/courtney-odonnell/jenna-talackova_b_1530563.html
My previous post on Jenna Talackova: https://lexiecannes.wordpress.com/2012/05/17/transgender-beauty-contestant-jenna-talackova-new-photos-new-complaints/
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