by Latino Observer
The series of boycotts and cancellations of business relationships with Miss USA and Miss Universe pageants are dizzying these days. It all stemmed from the comment of Donald Trump who called the Mexican immigrants as drug-runners and rapists. There is no doubt that the comments of Trump are repugnant and racist but should we really punish the Miss Universe pageant because of Donald Trump?
The action and words of Trump, how racist it may be, is not even reflected in both Miss USA and Miss Universe pageants. The reigning Miss USA, Nia Sanchez, and the current Miss Universe, Paulina Vega, are both Latinas. It is very rare not to see a Latina in the semis and since 2000, 50% of the winners at Miss Universe are Latinas. The Miss France organization even complained that Miss Universe is simply becoming a pageant for Latinas.
So what caused all of these uproar and drama? Well, honor and dignity matters a lot in Latin American nations. As a Latino, losing face is one of the fears and dread that we hate the most. Trump touched the sensitive nerve of the Latinos. TV networks, businesses and the people who severed their ties with Trump are afraid of backlash as Latinos are rapidly increasing in numbers in the US and thus changing its demographics. If the Latinos will boycott these entities, they are at a losing end.
Latinos are exercising their might and power against Trump and while there is no doubt that the racists remarks should be condemned, they should have spared the Miss USA and Miss Universe pageants. There is simply an overreaction and what the Latinos, especially the Mexicans, are doing do not correspond properly to Trump’s transgressions.
Consider this: In 1993 and in 2007 editions of Miss Universe, Mexicans booed Kenya Moore and Rachel Smith onstage on live TV. The two representatives of United States, who both happen to be black, were harassed and insulted while the world watched on. Isn’t that a form of racism too? Shouldn’t the Mexicans have been accounted for their rude behavior? Shouldn’t it also merit media uproar and condemnation and banning and boycotting? Oh well, instead of such, Mexico even won the Miss Universe crown in 2010.
So all these whining and griping are mere chest thumping – machismo Latino style. We don’t want to lose face, but we never hesitated in shaming others. It’s an overreaction. We have exaggerated things and we just love to blow it out of proportion. And really, it’s a shame. It’s shame how things were manipulated so that we the Latinos will become victims, when we ourselves are not afraid to become the perpetrators.