BY KHUSHBU KAPADIA
Editor in Chief
Nina Davuluri, 24, from New York won the 2014 87th Miss America pageant on Sept. 15. Davuluri is the second contestant in a row from New York to be crowned Miss America, and the first to be crowned of Indian descent.
“I’m so happy this organization has embraced diversity,” Davuluri said in her first press conference, moments after winning the crown in Atlantic City. “I’m thankful there are children watching at home who can finally relate to a new Miss America.”
However, within minutes of being crowned as Miss America, Twitter was flooded with comments pertaining to Davuluri’s race. Being of Indian descent, many people started posting questions and comments linking to terrorism, references about convenience stores and an ideology of what Miss America should look like.
According to some students like Henna Rizvi, business marketing major at County College of Morris, the fact that Miss America is of Indian descent proves that America is a diverse country.
“America is really diverse and the majority of America has various different cultures. That’s what makes us different,” Rizvi said.
Although America is diverse compared to other countries, Davuluri is still being tortured with racist comments.
“I think everyone that is bashing her is basically very ignorant,” Rizvi said. “Just let her have her moment. She’s just as American as everyone else. She was born and raised in New York, so what makes her less American?”
“America is a country that is successful mainly because of all the various cultures and ethnicities that exist,” said Annette Jacob, biology major at CCM, “and yet, racism still happens and was clearly portrayed in the Miss America pageant.”
According to The Guardian, Davuluri brushed off the racist comments. “I have to rise above that,” Davuluri said. “I always viewed myself as first and foremost American.”
These racist comments about the new, Asian Miss America prove that some people might still be uncomfortable with change and diversity in America. When some people think of Miss America, they might have a stereotypical image in their mind of what Miss America should look like.