Miss America drops swimsuit portion
Published 8:29 am Wednesday, June 6, 2018
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — When the Miss America pageant started in 1921, having young women parade around in bathing suits seemed like a great way to get tourists to come to the Atlantic City Boardwalk after Labor Day.
But how America views women has changed drastically since then, and the Miss America Organization is run by women who don’t think it’s such a hot idea.
Accordingly, when the pageant is held this September, nearly a year into the #MeToo era, it will no longer have a swimsuit competition.
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“We’re not going to judge you on your appearance because we are interested in what makes you you,” Gretchen Carlson, a former Miss America and the new head of the organization’s board of trustees, said in making the announcement Tuesday on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”
For decades, women’s groups and others had complained that the swimsuit portion was outdated, sexist and more than a little silly.
Carlson, whose sexual harassment lawsuit against Fox News Chairman Roger Ailes led to his departure, said the board had heard from potential contestants who lamented, “We don’t want to be out there in high heels and swimsuits.”