Muslim Beauty Contestant Quits Pageant after Backlash
The irony that Miss Saudi Arabia will no longer participating in the Miss Arab World Pageant is striking.
Her withdrawal comes after news of intense online backlash directed at the beauty queen.
Sunni Saudi Arabia is know for being ultra conservative. So, as you might surmise, they do not have an official state-sponsored beauty pageant.
In their culture women must always wear an abaya–a long robe that covers a woman’s entire body.
Malak Youssef, a 24-year-old Saudi Arabian beauty learned just how conservative her fellow citizens remain, despite more liberal changes occurring in Saudi Arabia. Online threats prompted her to quit Miss Arab World shortly before the crowning ceremony.
As Newsweek reports:
Youssef was nominated by a Saudi civil society organization to compete as Miss Saudi Arabia in the Miss Arab World pageant held in Morocco on Saturday. But the young woman chose to drop out of the race before the crowning ceremony due to intense online backlash from people who said she was misrepresenting her conservative Muslim country by participating in a beauty contest.
“I announce my withdrawal from the final competition rounds in ‘Miss Arab World 2018’. I am happy with just carrying the Miss Saudi Arabia title,” Youssef announced in a video posted to her Twitter account. She also said she was shocked and saddened by the backlash.
What can Miss Saudi Arabia do, if she’s for her culture? In truth, her becoming Miss Saudi Arabia was against her culture from the beginning. Was it not? A woman exhibiting strength…without a man? Further, was there a swimsuit competition?
We’ve been told that Saudi Arabia finds itself in the midst of social reform.
Recently, women gained the right to drive. For Americans this represents a pretty small step. But the move showcases just how few privileges Muslim women have.
Another recent announcement suggested that movie theaters would return to The Kingdom. Again, most Americans would say, “What’s the big deal?” But infusion of Western (mostly Leftist) culture is a big deal. A civilization-changing big deal to the Saudis.
The irony is that Leftists in America fight tooth and nail for this culture to come to America.
Consider that merely becoming Miss Saudi Arabia represents the maximum achievement for Saudi women. Because of their backwards culture, a beautiful Saudi woman cannot progress farther?
These women cannot compete with women of other nations due to “culture”? And it’s not just Saudi women.
Just last week the family of Miss Iraq fled the country because they received death threats when their daughter competed for Miss Universe. And when you consider these pageants and “world peace”, check out the audacity of Sarah Idan, Miss Iraq. She posted a picture of her with Miss Israel. No wonder her family fled.
As Newsweek continues:
Some Saudi social media users argued that it is inappropriate for Saudi women to compete in a pageant because it goes against the country’s traditional religious values.
“Saudi women are beautiful with their dignity, manners, and upbringing. They don’t need pageants to validate their beauty,” one social media user argued.
These women don’t need pageants to validate themselves.
Millions of women compete in pageants every year simply because they want to. But Muslim women rarely get the luxury of doing something just because they desire it.
Throughout the past year, we’ve published many stories involving the struggles of Muslim women. Still, American feminists pretend Muslim women are empowered. Recall when superstar Alicia Keys tweeted the hijab was a beautiful sign of strength a diversity?
American feminists continue to misunderstand the truth of Muslim culture. Or perhaps they actually do understand, but choose to embrace untruths instead.
Meanwhile, the Miss Arab World pageant aims to include different cultures. Unlike Miss America, veiled women can compete. Admittedly, I’m not sure how beauty is scored behind a veil. Further, women in national dress are excused from the swimsuit competition.
Is beauty about the body. To a degree, yes. But if we are focused on internal beauty, how about giving the world a real look at these women’s tortured souls.