You might have been fooled into thinking the pageant industry, famous for its 1950s-era approach to women, might forever be stuck in the past — but, no. Now, the 97-year-old Miss America Organization is following fashion's lead and embracing the future: women of all shapes and sizes.
Chairwoman of the Miss America board of directors, Gretchen Carlson, announced on Good Morning America that the competition will do away with the much-criticized bikini contest, instead contestants will interact with judges live, "where she will highlight her achievements and goals in life and how she will use her talents, passion, and ambition to perform the job of Miss America."
Most astounding of all, women will no longer be judged on their looks.
The #MeToo movement is apparently behind the shift. "We're experiencing a cultural revolution in our country with women finding the courage to stand up and have their voices heard on many issues," Carlson said. "Miss America is proud to evolve as an organization and join this empowerment movement."
It seems the talent portion is the only event left in the competition that will remain untouched. The evening dress section will also be updated, with contestants now able to wear whatever they wish.
Miss America 2.0 indeed.
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