- (Photo: Reuters/Mario Anzuoni)
Jenna Talackova, the Miss Universe Canada contestant disqualified for being transgender, has slammed the pageant's owner Donald Trump.
At a press conference on Tuesday, Talackova fired back at Trump and the organizers behind Miss Universe for disqualifying her as a finalist.
The Beauties of Canada organization reportedly decided to ban Talackova from the competition because she failed to reveal that she was born male.
Her attorney, Gloria Allred, first took charge of the conference and criticized Trump's dealings with the pageant.
"Jenna entered this competition and gave the pageant her time, her best efforts and her money," said Allred. "She did not think for one moment that what she might have looked like at birth would be relevant. She did not ask Mr. Trump to prove that he is a naturally-born man, or to see the photos of his birth, to view his anatomy, to prove that he was male. It made no difference to her. Why should it have made a difference to him?"
The press conference was held one day after the pageant's organizers reversed their decision to ban Talackova from the competition. They issued a statement that the 23-year-old would be able to compete, but it has not yet been determined if Talackova will actually participate.
Allred did add that her client is considering suing the pageant, though.
"Mr. Trump's statement fails to state that the rule that only naturally-born women will be allowed to compete will be eliminated," said Allred. "Otherwise, we are considering all of Jenna's legal options."
Although she was born male, Talackova has asked to be identified as a female since the age of four. At 14-years-old she began hormone therapy and underwent gender reassignment surgery at 19.
Last week, the pageant's organizers pulled Talackova from the competition.
"Jenna Talackova from Vancouver, British Columbia will not compete in the 2012 Miss Universe Canada competition because she did not meet the requirements to compete despite having stated otherwise on her entry form," Miss Universe Canada said in a statement. "We do however, respect her goals, determination, and wish her the best."
In the wake of her elimination, Talackova said she has been "overwhelmed" by the support she has received. She added her criticism of Trump.
"I wish Mr. Trump would just say, in plain words, whether or not I will be allowed to compete and, if I win, whether I will be allowed to represent Canada in the Miss Universe Competition," said Talackova on Tuesday.