Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Miss America

The following is a copy of an online discussion. It's amazing the varying views expressed by eight different people, much like the battle of voices between the various theories.

Speaker 1

Date: Tuesday, April 21, 2009 7:54am

Wow! I think this has to be the best clip I have yet to show... Not only is the Miss America Beauty Pageant the epitome of "heterosexual identity [] propelled into an endless repetition of itself" (Butler packet), because the women wear the "gender proper" (Butler) attire and discuss the "gender proper" roles they can play in society; moreover, the last contestant assumes that heterosexuality as proper and natural allows only the marriage between a man and woman. I'm floored that she said "no offense, " as if to say 'oh, I'm sorry sir you're an irregular part of society, and therefore, can not express whom you may love, no offense I'm taking away your right to choose.'  Furthermore, these women almost look like they are in drag, and this pageant is all just a farcical comedy and imitation of the real.

 Ps: Rachel Maddow and Kent Jones are both unnatural homosexuals, I like seeing their reaction to the charge of heterosexuality being the proper way.

Speaker 2

Date: Sunday, April 26, 2009 11:48pm

Hahaha, I am probably one of the few conservatives in the class, so I know everyone is going to bash me, please don't! I think it is interesting how ... points out that women have turned into one of the groups that have overcome trials and should be more liberal and progressive. That puts them into the same category as racial minorities and homosexuals, thus, according to that argument, they should all be on the same page.

However, I do not believe that there was anything wrong with what Miss California said. Honestly, I would answer the same way. One of my best friends is gay and we talked about the whole Prop 8 issue and I must say, there were good points on BOTH sides. I am sick and tired of the whole Prop 8 thing, so I'm going to leave it at that. I would say "no offense" too because some people are homosexual and they might take offense at what she said. I think that just because she is from a liberal state and she is a woman who has benefitted from the women's rights movement, people are making a big deal out of it and it is unfair. Those are her beliefs, and she has a right to them, just as people who believe gay marriage is acceptable have a right to their beliefs. I personally, do not believe gay marriage is right (due to my religion and conservative beliefs), but if the law said that homosexuals could get married, I would not go and protest. If my friend were to get married to his boyfriend, I would go and support them! So, I would be alright with it, but as far as my value system goes, I am against it. As Miss America said, no offense to anyone, that's just my prerogative.

Speaker 3

Date: Monday, April 27, 2009 1:36pm

Voltaire said, "I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." This is one of the great things about the class; we do not have to agree with each other.

My problem with the statements made by Miss California, aside from the fact that I do not agree with her views, is that I do not think it is ok to put the two words, "No Offense" in front of anything and sugarcoat the fact that it may hurt somebody's feelings; this is quite an ignorant view of the world. What she needs to realize is that her words may be offensive and that regardless of whether or not she wanted to offend somebody, she may have.

Aside from that, I am interested to hear what your best friend's response to you being against gay marriage is. You said, "If my friend were to get married to his boyfriend, I would go and support them! So, I would be alright with it, but as far as my value system goes, I am against it." Maybe I did not read your comments correctly, but I was wondering how you can be against it, but still show up and support your best friend for doing it...

Speaker 4

Date: Monday, April 27, 2009 11:53pm

The answer to your question might be within the very quote you posted, .... "I not agree with what you [marry], but I will defend to the death your right to [marry] it." At least, that's the only thing I could come up with that made sense to me.

 I agree with you, however, .... It's incredibly disingenuous to say what Miss California said and then try to hide behind a front of politeness. It's easier for people to stay hurtful things if they imagine that it isn't actually hurting someone. People are capable of quite impressive levels of cognitive dissonance in this way.

Speaker 5

Date: Wednesday, April 29, 2009 3:46pm

Come on you guys, she's a freaking beauty pageant contestant and a terrible public speaker.  She made a poor word choice by saying "no offense" but I think anything she said would have come out sideways.  She's not the brightest crayon in the box.  So to argue against "taking away people's right to be happy" based on one moron's poor locution seems a little bully-ish.  Her point was poorly-made but it is still her right make to it and it was still pretty clear.  She does not support gay-marriage.  That was her answer.  It would be the same if a Catholic asked her the question and she said, "no offense, but I think a ban of gay marriage should not be written in legislature."  That was her attempt to be diplomatic.   Some of us fall short in wearing bathing suits attractively, and well, she falls short in public speaking.  To each his (or her's or its) own.

Speaker 1

Date: Wednesday, April 29, 2009 5:25pm

I have to disagree on three points; first it's not just  "a freaking beauty pageant contestant" because like a barbie, she is looked up to and at that moment some child is getting their views molded. Secondly, in saying that I am offended at the idea of 'no offense' to the stripping away of other's happiness is not "bully-ish," I'm merely trying to point out the ridiculousness of saying that to someone with whose rights and mental/emotional health is adversely affected. It is disingenuous and thoughtless,  with the pretense that everything is okay. Finally, one says "no offense" if they're telling someone they don't like the casserole, not to the priest when you are saying sorry I'm making out with my same sex partner in front of you while your at the pulpit. Of course, I'm being dramatic to make the point as I usually do. Everyone is entitled to opinions, that's why we have a forum in which to make them, however not at the cost of others well-being.

Speaker 5

Date: Sunday, May 3, 2009 6:41pm

I lost you halfway through because I think you reached rant status : ).  Anyway, I just felt compelled to play devil's advocate because that's what I do.  I took issue not with you having a problem with her disagreeing with gay marriage, but rather with you arguing against two things and seeming to call it one.  She 1) disagreed with gay marriage on public television and 2) prefaced it with an empty, careless phrase to soften the blow because she was probably aware she was committing political suicide.  You argued that she, like barbie, molds the minds of children who are watching.  What exactly is she molding their minds into?  Would it only be okay for her to mold their minds into approving of gay marriage?  Should she be brutalized by the media and thus mold into their minds that speaking one's opinions is not okay?  One side of the spectrum is "okay" for children to hear, but the other is not?

Speaker 1

Date: Monday, May 4, 2009 8:32pm

I wasn't ranting, actually making light of this looong debate... Regardless, I like devil's advocates, but you said that it is just a beauty pageant and i was stating that it's more than that and used Barbie as a reference to why it is more than just dumb women making their views be known. Again, I am saying dumb women as a general term for her poorly phrased speech... She could be brilliant and just have different views and morals than I and a bad public speaker. I think all are entitled to their opinions, I think it is healthy to speak one's mind, I just don't think that it makes the conversation null and void because it is a beauty pageant specifically because this is popular among the pre-pubescents. That is my opinion and ultimately this is all up to the parents to instill the good morals, or even bad if they so choose :)

Speaker 6

Date: Tuesday, May 5, 2009 1:33pm

Dear ,

 As a devil's advocate, do you support the right of satanists and Republicans to marry?


ps: this post does not represent its author's views, institution, or favorite movie starring Katsuhiko Sasaki.

Speaker 6

Date: Tuesday, May 5, 2009 1:35pm

It just occurred to me that the smiley face : )  is another way to say "no offense." 

 ....It's the end of the semester, that's why.

Speaker 1

Date: Tuesday, May 5, 2009 4:35pm

Can be, or as a way to show you're being cheeky, can be seen as pretty ambiguous...

Speaker 3

Date: Wednesday, April 29, 2009 7:17pm

I put in a Voltaire quote (see above).

Nobody said we are attacking people for their points' of view, but rather simply mentioning that we disagree.

Also, my problem is not that she said something offensive. I get offended and I probably offend people all of the time. I simply think it is ignorant to think that people will not be offended just because someone said, "no offense."

Aside from that I think she is a pretty good public speaker (I mean, she made it to runner-up of Miss America), I just don't like her.

Speaker 2

Date: Tuesday, April 28, 2009 12:22am

In response to ..., my friend and I have talked about it before, and we both understand each others views. I love your Voltaire quote, "I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." My friend and I agree to disagree on this issue, and that's completely fine since if everyone was the same it would be boring! Basically, what I meant is that I personally do not agree with gay marriage since it is in opposition with my church's teachings, but I love my friend and I support him, and I think that he and his boyfriend had the right to get married, then they should go and do that and I would support them in their decision to do so. If it makes him happy, then I want him to be happy!

Speaker 1

Date: Tuesday, April 28, 2009 10:11pm

however, we are taking away peoples right's to be happy because one groups value system does not agree with another's. It's all very hypocritical and a cope out to hide behind a religion. This is where the "no offense" gets me and I think what Judith Butler is attempting to expose. And it's not just Butler, but Orientalism as well; the text even mentions the Bible being a piece of literature that is held to such a high esteem that despite your acknowledgment of wanting your friend to be able to choose, your religion tells your intuition and love of your friend to think otherwise. It's terribly sad that we allow a text to influence us to the point of making others miserable in the hopes of attaining a place in heaven. If that's heaven, I don't want any part of it.

Speaker 2

Date: Wednesday, April 29, 2009 11:55pm

Well, I am a devout Christian (LDS), so religion is something that has been a huge part of my life since day one. It is not a cop-out as far as I am concerned that my answer is due to my religious beliefs. My religious beliefs have helped to shape my value system. I believe in the Bible as more than just a work of literature, I believe there are mistakes in it, but I believe it to be true. However, you may completely disagree with me, you are free to believe as you wish, just as I am free to believe as I wish.

 I see your point on the whole "no offense" thing. In our society, we are so concerned with being politically correct. I believe by Miss California saying that phrase, that was her attempt at trying to be considerate to the other side. I totally understand that. However, she shouldn't have to apologize for her beliefs. I believe gay marriage is wrong. Other people believe it should be allowed. Both sides have their reasons why. I just wish people would try to understand each other instead of bash the other side and actually listen to what the other side has to say. I listened and I'm glad I did. I'm tired of this issue, so I'm going to drop it. I just don't think that it's fair to say that just because of my religious beliefs, it's unreasonable to think this and that I'm hiding behind it. I believe in God, you may not believe in God, that's fine, but please respect my beliefs as I respect yours.

Speaker 1

Date: Thursday, April 30, 2009 1:23am

Okay, I know I am as tired as you to keep this conversation going and I think that the whole point has been lost in it. This is not about anyone's religion, or a lame beauty pageant, or even about Prop 8  for me and that is why I originally made the post. I'm bothered that we make laws allowing others to mold one another based off of their beliefs. Marriage is a symbol that some feel they need to express - I'm not even one of those people! My boyfriend and I have no interest in marriage. I wear a ring on my finger as a token of our love and he brags to all of his friends that I bought him a motorcycle - that's just us. I think this is ultimately my point - but it was totally lost - we are all attempting to express who we love in our own ways and if that means marriage then it shouldn't be hindered.

Speaker 3

Date: Monday, May 4, 2009 10:14pm


 This is where this conversation makes me so sad. I know we have established multiple times that we all respect each others' views, even if we disagree with each other, on any given topic. It is hard to sit back and not share how one feels, when that person feels attacked. Unfortunately, some people do not agree with gay marriage because o what they learn from their religious teachings and this puts us at opposition with one another. Some people take this to the extreme and violence is therefore bred. Yes, the Bible is a canonical work which is held at quite a high esteem, but hopefully in our modern state we can take its teachings and interpret it to teach love, respect, and equality. To teach inequality would be to do an injustice to the Bible and to future generations; our children. Regardless of what the Bible says itself, religion in general does NOT teach hatred at any place in its writings. No religions have scripture which tells its constituents to hate. The hate emerges in the opposition. When one religion feels threatened by another, often fights break out and this is quite a sad aspect of our society as a whole. Many of us live in opposition with the other.

I was reading a book recently which shared that, "The corollary of 'war is caused by religion' should be 'peace is the result of the absence of religion.' It has never been that simple." This scholar is right; it really is not that simple. Truthfully, before monotheism came into existence, about 3,000 years ago, the world was in a constant state of warfare. Amidst classical Greek and Roman societies, the world was also in war. It is hard to escape and it is not religion's fault. What we need to recognize most of all, I think, is that peace and war are not in fact opposites, war and creation are the true opposites. I know I have gone off onto a tangent, but I feel so deeply that we, and this includes myself, need to learn how to live civilly with one another. I am not naive, and I don't need everybody to be baking cakes of flowers and sunshine for one another, but how can we continue to go on like this? This is not a reflection of this small disagreement in a University class in 2009, it is a reflection of the society in which we live. It's Panopticism's untrustworthiness, it's Orientalism's marginalization, it's Feminism's assertion of the identity of the self, it's Postmodernism's inability to stick to one thought or idea to explain, well anything.

 It is not enough to sit around, mind our own business, and wait for the world to change. Stephen Belber, who is a resident of Laramie Wyoming, where Matthew Shepherd was brutally murdered, explains that, "'Live and let live' is, at best, a load of crap. It basically boils down to: 'If I don't tell you I'm a fag, you won't beat the crap out of me'. What kind of solution is that?" Truthfully, I wish I could have found a more universal quote to explain of my ideas but this quote serves the purpose quite well. Insert any ethnic group, religion, race, or whatever in place of the word "fag." Trust me it applies. As stated, I do not care what anybody's personal views are, but don't spread hatred, and don't spread inequality. The quote sort of wraps up this argument, so I think I will leave it at that. Thank you for reading (if you got this far...)

Speaker 7

Date: Thursday, April 30, 2009 3:58pm

I thought your post was great! This quote was perfect:

Voltaire said, "I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." This is one of the great things about the class; we do not have to agree with each other.

 I always enjoy reading your blogs as well as your posts! Keep up the good work.

Speaker 8

Date: Monday, May 4, 2009 2:20am

You are not the only conservative in the class....Me too so we can get bashed together. I personally was proud of her answer and yes she stumbled a bit on her wording but why wouldn't you? Almost half of the audience and Californians disagree with her. Its unfair that she was robbed of her crown because the judge who happened to be gay didn't like her honesty. Since when is your opinion wrong? As for her answer, I agree on her beliefs, anyone can go ahead and bash me, I just brush it off and defend my standpoint. Bashing people for their individual beliefs is utter ignorance.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I found it funny that Perez Hilton was one of the judges (or so I heard) for the pageant. He is homosexual, that's not hard to figure out but could the fact that Miss California said no to same sex marriage greatly influenced his decision....abso-freakin-lutely. I'm all for gay marriage...if two people want to get together and they're the same sex then let them, It's not harming me. At the same time though, I can TOTALLY understand your viewpoint. If someone doesn't believe in it, then that's their right. If Miss California would have said Yes to same sex marriage then "maybe she would have won the crown" but it obviously wouldnt have been such a big deal as her saying no. The Miss America pageant shouldn't be making these girls pick sides on certain issues. Either way, one side of the argument, whether it be pro or con is going to be upset. I give her mad props for sticking to her beliefs.

And as for the "picture scandal" I think people really just need to get a life. Who cares if shes comfortable with her body and posed for a magazine. It's not like shes some prostitute. I know that these women are expected to be role models for younger women but honestly, what is positive and uplifting about a pageant that teaches you that you have to dress in beautiful clothes, wear make up, have big boobs, and prance around in skimpy bikinis? In my opinion nothing. It's just fun to watch.