Beauty contests

Beauty contests are misogynist- what about trans beauty contests?

Well, like those for cis women, they objectify women, judge us by our looks, and let men ogle women- with the added frisson that men can go- ooh, yuck- It was born a man! Not cool. Cis women’s beauty contests stopped being televised in the UK around the same time as the Black and White Minstrel Show.

Here’s the Daily Express on Pammy Rose. You would hope we would be beyond this: Pammy was “born a man”, apparently, rather than a baby; they tell her former name, and show pictures of her as a child; she felt like a woman in a man’s body; she wants to be a voice, representing trans people; she was bullied as a “freak” and a “tranny”; the first prize is a “sex change”.


There’s the Express with this oleaginously supportive “good news” story, with at the side a video of a bikini babe’s beach workout turning out badly, and another bikini babe’s zip wire jump turning out badly. I wonder how. Trans women are so courageous! It’s better than saying we are a threat, and should not be allowed in lavatories, but only just. I hoped we were beyond this, being judged for our looks, being stared at. The scrutiny is frightening.

She’s not a voice for me. The contest site is mostly photos. I came third in a beauty contest once, but it was just a bit of fun for ourselves, at a cross-dressers’ weekend away. I don’t really blame her, I suppose, it might feel empowering, she must advance her interests as she sees fit, but she is still being seen as a freak.

Here’s The Telegraph laughing at the winner Jai Dara Latto being forced to hand back her crown, accused of being a drag queen, a gay male rather than a trans woman. Rachael, the organiser, said,

Underwear is very important to transgender females – one of the first thing people do is change their underwear as it makes us feel like we are finally a woman. Oh, God! Like the Express, the Telegraph had pictures of Caitlyn Jenner.

It is not that Jai was “a drag queen”, something qualitatively different from “a trans woman”, but that she was not full time, contrary to the rules of the contest. Not fully committed, she allegedly spent some time presenting male. You might not want a man winning a trans woman’s beauty contest; and any other rule to exclude males might be subverted; but the Telegraph says it is about underwear.

It is exactly the same as cis women’s beauty contests. Both objectify women. I feel sick. Yet- here’s Pammy, making her way as best she can in the world. I wish her well.


All comments welcome.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.