La Vega, a model, was crowned Miss Mexico in September at the Nuestra Belleza Mundo pageant. La Vega placed second in the pageant, qualifying her to represent Mexico in the Miss World contest. However, she will no longer be doing so as she was officially withdrawn last month. Pageant organizers claim the 19-year-old had a “lack of dedication and discipline.”
La Vega voiced a different opinion as she was interviewed on Good Morning America recently. She explained that her weight gain of six pounds is what lead to her dismissal. La Vega further explained in a press conference how her coach has had her on a specific diet during this season. The entire ordeal has left the model very upset and she admits to feeling deceived.
This isn’t the first time pageant contestants have made these claims. Recently, 17-year-old Domonique Ramirez’s crown was revoked too. Ramirez was a sash bearer for Bexar County, Texas. Ramirez also claims that she was dismissed due to weight gain. Again, the pageant officials stated other reasons for their decision.
Right or wrong, many of the pageant contestants do sign a contract with elements pertaining to their size and measurements. However, the backlash seems to imply that minor and typical weight fluctuations are not listed in the contracts.
While onlookers stand with their jaws agape over these claims, it is fair to recall that they may not be truthful. The organization may be taking the heat from a beauty queen scorned and weight may have nothing to do with it.
These cases do however, spotlight the intense focus the beauty industry places on body image. There’s skinny and there’s healthy, the two can not always co-exists. Hopefully these organizations are truly committed to these truths and not forgetting that their biggest audience is comprised of young impressionable girls, who need to see healthy as beautiful- not thin. Not that six pounds of weight gain in your teens will cost you something you’ve worked so hard for.
August 13th, 2011