Domonique Ramirez may be a size 2, but apparently, she's too fat to be Miss Texas. The 17-year-old was Miss San Antonio, but for a variety of reasons, including her weight, her title has been revoked and her crown handed off to the runner-up of the April 2010 competition. Now she's suing the Miss Bexar County organization, stating that she shouldn't be "slandered like this" and her "future shouldn't have to be ruined like this."
Beauty pageants are a tricky beast. On one hand, there are certain standards contestants really must abide by to play the game -- one of them obviously being, err, being attractive. Sure, our societal standards of beauty tend to be seriously out of whack. But, Ramirez weighs in at 129 pounds, is 5-foot-8, and a size 2! Doesn't seem like stats that need ANY adjustment whatsoever. Yet, she says she was told by the pageant board to lose 13 pounds ...
The explanation given by the pageant board's spokeswoman to ABC:
As a Miss San Antonio reigning queen, [Ramirez] has to live up to our rules and regulations and the standards of our contract ... She was doing a photo shoot and asked to wear her wardrobe from the competition, but it did not fit her. I told her we need to get you on an exercise program. We need to get ready to compete for Miss Texas, just like any elite athlete.
Well, strutting down a catwalk in swimwear does not make one an "elite athlete," but whatever. From this info alone, I'm not feeling all that sympathetic toward the pageant board. What size clothing were they trying to make her wear, anyway? A 00? (Does anyone really wear that size?)
There's also the fact that Ramirez says she was told to "get off the tacos," which could be seen as a comment with racist overtones. To that end, the spokeswoman explained to KSTA Radio in San Antonio, "I said, you know, ‘Get off the tacos, get off the chips and soda.’ Because she’s 17, and that’s what these kids eat." Because it's what Ramirez's diet consists of? Or the pageant lady just assumes the teen is scarfing trans fats like there's no tomorrow?
Obviously, there's a lot of she said/she said, and this isn't a straightforward case of evil beauty pageant people vs. innocent teen beauty queen. Complicating matters, Ramirez is said to have "skipped events or showed up with her boyfriend, and was generally unreliable." Being that she is only 17, I wouldn't be surprised if there's at least a bit of truth to that. Maybe she's an immature, obnoxious, irresponsible twit who couldn't hold up her end of the bargain as Miss San Antonio.
Even so, she's not fat. And telling her to lose weight when she's a perfectly normal, healthy teen girl is ridiculous and wrong. As far as that part of the controversy goes, the pageant people definitely owe her an apology.
Now, Ramirez has a temporary restraining order, which was issued yesterday, against the pageant board. The order bans the board from naming a new winner until the case is finally adjudicated.
Both Ramirez and the pageant board will go back to court on February 16. It would be nice if they could reach some kind of civil decision then, but I have a sneaking suspicion that the pageant people will get their way. Doubt we'll be seeing Ramirez competing for the Miss Texas title anytime soon. But maybe, sans beauty queen title (and accompanying pressure), she'll be better off.
What do you think -- should Domonique Ramirez be given back the crown?
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