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Miss Universe Boots Jenna Talackova, Transgender Finalist, for 'Dishonesty'

Miss Universe Boots Jenna Talackova, Transgender Finalist, for 'Dishonesty'

Miss Universe disqualified Jenna Talackova from their Canada pageant finalists for the transgender woman failing to reveal she was born male, according to reports.

Jenna Talackova's Miss Universe ended with a decision handed down by The Beauties of Canada organization, which organizes the Miss Universe Canada competition and reserves the right to send the winner to the Miss Universe pageant, co-owned by Donald Trump and NBC Universal.

"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 stated Friday. "We do however, respect her goals, determination, and wish her the best."

The "requirements" the pageant speaks of is honesty. On the registration form, Talackova stated that she is female, when in fact she was born a male. Despite there being no specific rules against transgender women or sexual reassignment surgery, Miss California rules- which go into Miss USA and Miss Universe rules- state that all women "must be of good health and moral character."

Denis Davila, national director of Miss Universe Canada, told CTV that Talackova's lack of honesty with the pageant was the reason for her disqualification, not her assumed sex.

"She was dishonest," said Davila. "We have to have the facts straight."

Despite the disqualification, Talackova vowed on her now-private Twitter account to fight the ruling.

"I'm disqualified, however I'm not giving up. I'm not going to just let them disqualify me over discrimination," she posted.

The 23-year-old first discovered her feelings about her sex and gender at age 4, and by 14, was taking female hormones. At 19, she had her sexual reassignment surgery, and has participated in transgender pageants since then.

"I regard myself as a woman- with a history," she winked and told reporters in 2010. Since the publicizing of the incident, a petition has started, with thousands of signatures added in support of Talackova's determination to enter into the Miss Universe pageant despite her transgender status.

Despite her cries of discrimination, Davila says the issue isn't prejudice, but precedent.

"You can look at it the way she wants to look at it, but we all have to follow the same rules," said the director.

Many agree.

"Rules are rules and it has nothing to do with discrimination," wrote China Love on the ABC blog. "I sincerely believe in live and let live but let's let the real women who are truly qualified participate in this pageant."

"No amount of hormone therapy and surgery in the world is going to convert someone's XY chromosomes into XX chromosomes. This is a guy and he does not belong in a women-only contest," agreed Sigh.

The Miss Universe Canada crown will be given to one of the remaining finalists May 19 in Toronto.



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