With the eyes of the world focused on Toronto for a historic finals night for the 2012 Miss Canada Universe pageant, 23 year old Jenna Talackova was not only competing for the right to represent her nation in the Miss Universe event in December, but an entire worldwide community of transwomen.
She did make it to the 12 semifinalist round, but unfortunately not to the five finalists one.
But as I’ve said for a few days now, even if she didn’t walk out with the Miss Canada Universe crown last night and I presume she’s probably disappointed she didn’t, she’s still a winner.
Talackova fought for her place in this pageant after being unjustly disqualified by the bogus and transphobic ‘natural born womna’ rule. Because she did so she eventually broke through a glass ceiling that allowed her to be on stage with 64 other Canadian women and will make it easier (we hope) for the next transwoman who wishes to compete in her Miss Universe system national pageant.
In the process of tenaciously fighting for her dream to happen, she gave transwomen around the world an opportunity to jump start educational conversations about who we are, how transphobic and wrong that rule was and what we are capable of doing if we’re just given the opportunity to try.
It’s never easy to be a trailblazer, and Jenna did so with class and dignity. Her sister contestants agree with me since she was one of three women who tied for the Miss Congeniality award for this 2012 pageant.
It’ll be interesting moving forward from this date to see what transpires next for Jenna in the future and see if she makes come true her stated goals of becoming a Victoria’s Secret model and getting the swimsuit cover of Sports Illustrated.
I have the feeling that this determined young woman somehow will make it happen and expand the boundaries of what is possible for #girlslikeus.
You’re still a winner in our eyes, Jenna.