Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Way to Go, Miss California!

Big kudos go to a young lady who demonstrated recently that there are things more important than even the Miss USA crown--something that she'd undoubtedly worked towards for a very long time.

During the recent Miss USA pageant, as a finalist for the crown Miss California was asked whether she thought that every state should legalize gay marriage. None of the questions for the finalists were meant to be easy, but this one was a loaded cannon. Her answer, quite simply, was that she believed that marriage was between a man and a woman.

Since that time, she's been razzed, first off, for stating her personal beliefs in such a forum as the Miss USA pageant. (But why shouldn't she? The judge asked her what she thought. What else was she supposed to say?) She's also been razzed for not coming up with a more middle-of-the-road answer that would have pleased everyone. She was so close to winning that crown; if she'd just told the judges what they wanted to hear, she very likely could have had it. She could have said something more general, such as, "I think the states should decide this issue for themselves," and she could have been crowned Miss USA.

But even that wasn't really what she thought. Instead, she stood up for her beliefs and she called it like she saw it. After all, dumping the responsibility on the states still doesn't change the real heart of the question: Do you believe that this is what they should choose?

In an interview on the Today show, she said that she'd realized that winning the Miss USA crown wasn't God's plan for her. She went on to explain to the skeptical interviewer that the pageant outcome has opened up many opportunities for her already to share with people the idea that they should stand up for their beliefs, no matter what the consequences may be.

After all, it wasn't the woman who'd ultimately won the Miss USA title who was receiving all this publicity now. It was her, Miss California. She's now in a far better position to spread that message than she ever would have been if she'd hedged on her answer. And she knows that even though she may have offended some of the judges with her answer, she did not offend her own conscience. Nor did she offend her God.

So, way to go, Miss California! You've already made a bigger impact by staying true to your beliefs than you would have if you'd simply kissed up to the judges. Thanks for your example and for continuing to handle the situation gracefully.


HOWARD'S said...

I don't know what's more impressive, her answer during the MISS USA contast or her reactions to the post interviews. She's done a great job handling the situation. Wouldn't that be great if everyone could be so honest instead of worrying about what they may loose or who they may offend?!?!

Katie Parker said...

It's the kind of thing we constantly discuss in seminary--standing up for your beliefs regardless of the consequences--but it is easier to talk about than to actually do. Which makes what Miss CA has done all the more admirable.

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