Pageant reveals true country

TENSION: A few people have an American identity crisis

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On Sunday night, a new Miss America was crowned. The winner was Nina Duvuluri, Miss New York. Duvuluri was the first woman of Indian descent to ever win the crown. While she was still celebrating her new title, people were doing everything they could to ruin her happiness.

Many people believe she does not deserve the title because she is not “American.” A lot of people on Twitter were offended by her winning because it was so close to 9/11 and made jokes accusing her of being a part of Al-Qaeda.

These people are bringing a bad name to America. It has been more than 40 years since the end of the civil rights movement and instead of showing how far we have come since then, America is taking step backward and showing how un-accepting we still are.

I am disgusted by all the hate Duvuluri has received for winning Miss America. I believe people should be celebrating the fact that someone other than a stereotypical blonde-haired Barbie doll has won the competition. In a country where we claim to be proud of diversity, we sure aren’t showing it.

What I found most disturbing is that people were referring to her as a terrorist and saying it was disrespectful to the victims of 9/11. First off, she is of Indian descent, which was not the race of the terrorists. Second, I believe making comments like this is what is truly offensive to the victims of 9/11.

People also are making comments that Duvuluri is not American. Just because she isn’t Caucasian doesn’t make her U.S. citizenship any less American.

Since the civil rights movement, America should have made more progress than we have when it comes to race. Race fuels so much hate in a country where we promote freedom and diversity. Miss America should represent these things, as Duvuluri is working to through her platform, which emphasizes cultural education and diversity.

When asked about the racist remarks and hatred, Duvuluri gracefully dismissed the remarks and said in an interview with Time magazine, “I have to rise above that, I always viewed myself as first and foremost American.”

By rising above this hatred, Duvuluri has become even more of a role model, not only for young women today but young people everywhere. She is showing society she is not going to let negative people bring her down, and she is going to work to truly celebrate diversity.

The media should be focusing more on Duvuluri rising above the hate and promoting her platform than showing the hateful things people are saying. Even though the media is shaming them, they are still giving these people the attention they want. By ignoring these people, the media can show their comments are neither appreciated nor accepted.

America is a country of diversity. It’s time we act like it.

Sam Gaspardo is a staff writer for The Dakota Student. She can be reached at [email protected].

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