The Miss America Pageant Has Been a Positive Representation of Young Women - Higher Education: On September 15, 24-year-old Nina Davuluri became the ninth woman of color and the first woman of Indian descent to win the Miss America pageant. Not surprisingly (or surprisingly depending on your level of cynicism), social media went into overdrive with hate filled, paranoid xenophobic comments. Some of the comments were downright disgraceful. Fortunately, the negative commentary was handily outmanned by the level of positive rhetoric and support given to Ms. Davuluri. As for the current Miss America, she handled the controversy with such grace, stating, “I have to rise above all that. I consider myself an American.”
While plenty has already been written or discussed about the racism directed toward our newly crowned Miss America, I instead want to focus on and challenge the sentiment prevalent in some quarters that the pageant is a retrograde entity detrimental to young women.