Jenna Talackova is a 23-year-old, blonde-haired, blue-eyed Miss Canada pageant queen, who’s probably not much different than her fellow pageant competitors — except that that she was born a boy. Talackova says she knew she was in the wrong body by the time she was 4, and began living as a girl (and undergoing hormone therapy) at the age of 14. By 19, she had gender reassignment surgery, and was making the rounds on the pageant circuit. In 2010 she was a finalist in Thailand’s Miss International Queen, a pageant specifically for transsexuals.
But Talackova wanted more — and so she applied to and competed in the Miss Universe Canada competition.
All was well, until it was discovered that she was born a he. She was promptly told that she didn’t meet the requirements to compete, but that pageant officials ”respect her goals, determination and wish her the best.”
It’s unclear, however, what requirement Talackova failed to meet. The official rules of the contest only require:
… To qualify for the 2012 competition, you must be a Canadian Citizen and at least 18 years of age and under 27 years of age by February 1st, 2012. If you meet the basic requirements, we’ll be sending you an application form to participate in a Casting or Local pageant to select the finalists for the Miss Universe® Canada pageant.
Talackova has yet to make a public statement about her dismissal — though she did say through her lawyer that she won’t “give up.”
What do you think? Should Talackova be allowed to compete, despite not being born a biological woman? [Buzzfeed]