Am I the only one confused over the “controversy” of the newly-crowned Miss USA’s comments on healthcare?
Kára McCullough was crowned Miss USA on May 14. She is Black, is a chemist for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, volunteers her time to teach children about science, and is the seventh foreign-born Miss USA.
Clearly, she is incredibly smart and she has been called one of the most intelligent contestants the competition has ever had. And as evidenced by the social media backlash, she’s not allowed to have an opinion on healthcare and feminism.
McCullough was asked during the Q&A portion of the pageant — “Do you think affordable health care for all U.S. citizens is a right or a privilege and why?”
“I’m definitely going to say it’s a privilege,” McCullough responded. “As a government employee, I am granted healthcare. And I see firsthand that for one to have healthcare, you need to have jobs. So therefore, we need to continue to cultivate this environment that we’re given the opportunities to have healthcare, as well as jobs to all the American citizens worldwide.”
The same went for her answer about being a feminist:
“So as a woman scientist in the government, I’d like to lately transpose the word feminism to equalism,” McCullough said as the audience cheered. “I don’t really want to consider myself — try not to consider myself like this die-hard, you know, like, ‘Oh, I don’t really care about men.’ But one thing I’m gonna say, though, is women, we are just as equal as men when it comes to opportunity in the workplace.”
McCullough made the media rounds on May 16 to clarify that she actually thinks healthcare is a “right,” and not a “privilege” — as she originally stated.
“I am privileged to have healthcare and I do believe that it should be a right,” the 25-year-old told Good Morning America. “I hope and pray moving forward that healthcare is a right for all worldwide.”
McCullough explained that her initial healthcare remarks were merely an attempt at getting people to see where she was coming from, as an insured governmental employee. “Having a job, I have to look at healthcare like it is a privilege,” McCullough said.
I, for one, am disappointed that McCullough felt the need to backtrack, that she felt pressured to waiver from her original answer. Are we as a society so close-minded that an opinion that differs from ours becomes “wrong”? What happened to diversity and celebrating differences? It appears that when it comes to diversity of thought, there is little tolerance.
One male Twitter user wrote, “It’s always funny when dumb broads try to sound smart.” Way to dismiss a woman because she dares to have an opinion that you disagree with. Classy.
I guess it’s not enough to be an accomplished woman in a tough male-dominated field, and to be smart — you must also voice opinions that don’t offend anyone. And heaven forbid that you have a brain and can form your own opinion!
Don’t listen to them, Kara! And I’m rooting for you in the upcoming Miss Universe contest.