Trans Beauty Kicked Out of Pageant
This is an interesting twist on an old story. MSNBC has it:
The organizers for Miss Universe Canada yanked a transgender contestant from the pageant, saying that although she may feel like a woman, rules say she must be born one, the Toronto Star reported.Denis Davila, the national director of the Miss Universe Canada franchise, told the Vancouver Sun that the contestant, Jenna Tacklova, a native of Vancouver, British Columbia, wrote on her registration that she was born female. He suspected that she was born male and asked her about it earlier this month. She was dismissed that day.Davila said that the Miss Universe franchise requires that contestants be “naturally born female,” according to the Sun.“She feels like a real girl and she is a real girl. She didn’t expect people to question it,” Davila told the Sun. “She was hoping we could put her back in the competition, but the rules are very clear and there’s no way we can go back on it.”He added: “She was excited about the competition. Just because she can’t compete doesn’t mean we stopped loving her.”Those rules are not mentioned on the Miss Universe website, which states that contestants must be unmarried and 18 years or older. Miss Universe Canada organizers boot transgender contestant
I am not comfortable with the wording of this article. Jenna Tacklova was born however she was born, if she is female then she was born female. Transgender people do not "change their sex," they change their identity and self-presentation to match the sex they already were. The doctor apparently reported at birth that she was male, but unfortunately you cannot ask a baby what sex they are, you have to go by certain external physical signs, and some small proportion of the time the physical characteristics are ambiguous -- or wrong.
But the interesting thing here is that her transgender nature almost certainly makes it harder rather than easier to win a beauty contest. This story says that she started hormone therapy when she was fourteen, which was probably after puberty and the emergence of physiological characteristics of the male body.
This is kind of opposite to the more familiar story where a transgender woman competes in a sporting event, having grown up with the muscular strength of a man. I am actually somewhat sympathetic with ciswomen who complain in that situation, I don't know what the nondiscriminatory solution is but athletic competitions are separated by sex largely because of differences in male and female physical strength.
In this case, though, Jenna Tacklova (who is obviously a knockout) is competing in what amounts to a femininity competition, where she would seem to have an actual disadvantage. I can't see any reason to keep her out of it, can you?