miss awesome brain

Tue Aug-28th-2007 // Filed under: I Rant!

I know that the idea that pretty people are stupid is not only idiotic, it’s simply wrong. I know that. However, I think it’s demonstrably correct that some very stupid people are also pretty, and furthermore, some pretty people do coast through their lives on their looks alone without ever bothering to do any of those boring and icky things like “getting an education” or “not being dumber than a sack of hammers”. Some of these people are very successful — I mean, I’m sure people like Jessica Simpson and Paris Hilton suffer from an exaggerated public perception of stupidity, but let’s face it, they live in little airhead bubbles of their own, and they don’t really make any effort to get to know the world outside.

Others don’t really get successful, they just get famous for a while — and when these people are teenagers, most of whom are already inherently stupid (but most of whom also grow up to realize the extent of their former ignorance), this inability to comprehend the complexities of the world that surrounds them — and even more importantly, the slack-jawed lack of interest in it — can reach staggering levels.

Case in point:

She has absolutely no idea what she’s talking about. Look at her! She’s just forging on bravely, the hamster wheel in her head creaking back and forth desperately, rusty from lack of use. She’s out of her depth and she knows it, but she sticks to her guns, goddammit! In case you’re kind of zoning out on what she’s actually saying — and I know I was, because it makes no sense — here’s her response to the incredibly difficult question of why she thinks recent polls show a fifth of Americans can’t locate the United States of America on a world map:

“I personally believe that… U.S. Americans are unable to do so because some… people out there in our nation don’t have maps and I believe that our education, like such as in South Africa and the Iraq everywhere, like such as, and… I believe that they should… our education over here in the U.S. should help the U.S., or should help South Africa, should help the Iraq and the Asian countries, so we will be able to build up our future. For our children.”

Yeeah. “U.S. Americans.” “The Iraq.” And the reason these geniuses can’t spot the United States of America on the map is that they don’t have maps? But it’s important to realize that it’s not as if she’s actually expressing an opinion here, she’s just spitting out the standard pageant rhetoric and trying to keep the panic at bay. She’s not communicating, she’s just blurting out words that kind of string together. She probably isn’t aware of what she’s actually saying, she’s just struggling to work in that obligatory “future of our children” bit.

I fucking hate pageants. I hate them with a passion that could ignite dead suns. I hate them because they’re a breeding ground for a culture of ignorance; they gleefully perpetuate the stereotype of the dumb and pretty woman and reward it with fame, money and praise. Very few people are born stupid — there are some folks out there who really are just dimbulbs, but more often than not, it’s a question of cultural upbringing and, to put it in the simplest terms, whether they are encouraged to be smart. When every little girl wants to be Miss Whatever, that doesn’t exactly encourage them to crack open a book instead of fucking around with Barbie and friends. Miss Whatever is dumber than a bag of hammers, and she gets to be on TV, so why should anyone strive for anything else? Ooh, honey, look how pretty she is!

I’m not saying that all pretty people are stupid. I’m not. But then, your average pageant lineup isn’t a balanced cross-section of pretty people, it’s a selection of people who got kinda lucky at the genetic lottery and are stupid enough to enter a pageant. As a rule, smart people — regardless of whether they’re pretty or have faces like a jarful of smashed assholes — stay the fuck away from pageants, because they’re demeaning and filled with vacuous idiots whose self-esteem depends on whether their smile pleases some panel of self-important buffoons, empty-headed and bright-eyed people who are groomed to be as inoffensive and bland as possible, to avoid all difficult opinions and situations, to require as little thought as possible. And even if the participants are smart — and I know that some of them are perfectly intelligent people who are doing this in the hopes of turning it into a legitimate modeling/acting/whatever career, or because it pays for their education, or whatever — their judgment is poor, as evidenced by the fact that they are there. They’re doing their part in supporting a system that fucks them over and sells them short, and they’re doing it even though they’re smart and educated enough to know better.

The blatant intellectual dishonesty of pageants is staggering. The same people who cry over nudity on television go gaga over pageants — what, do you think these women are up there because they’re so nice? Because they want world peace? They are up there looking pretty and fuckable, and they are engineered to have as little personality as is humanly possible, and they are judged on how they look and how well they can perform neat little circus tricks, like twirl around or make vaguely human-like sounds for about thirty seconds. But that’s not considered to be offensive, even though it’s objectification easily on par with pornography. At least porn is honest about what it is…

And Miss South Carolina, here? She’s just a teenager who wants to be Miss Teen USA (and got her wish, too), and she’s probably nervous as hell, and public speaking can freak people out. It’s not easy. I know.

But look at her. Just look at her eyes while her mouth works its way around the words — she’s not even saying anything, but she’s so sincere about it. It’s even possible that she honestly believes that she’s saying something profound and sending an important message right now.

And when this shit gets reported on the news? Then it’s a “blonde moment”.

Dead suns. I tell you.


  1. The worst part is the contestants receive the questions ahead of time. She didn’t win though, she was third runner up.

    Comment by Marijohanna — August 28, 2007 @ 1188326599

  2. Oh, and to prove that not all the contestants were total morons, here is a link to a montage of the winner of the pageant, Miss teen Colorado. Very umm… diplomatic answer to a difficult question at around 2:50. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rYN-0b3RWR0 =)

    Comment by Marijohanna — August 28, 2007 @ 1188327792

  3. I stand corrected — third place, then. I wonder where I got the idea that she won? Oh, well…

    The Miss Teen Colorado bit was kind of interesting. The question was meaningless, of course, but it’s obvious that she’d like to say something else, and she doesn’t even bother to hide it — she clearly makes a conscious decision to go for a more diplomatic answer.

    And, y’know, she was all coherent and thought about what she was saying and everything. That didn’t hurt any. =)

    Just the same — dead suns.

    Comment by Mikki — August 28, 2007 @ 1188339739

  4. Mikko, you’re a fucking genius. This was exactly what I needed to read this morning.

    Comment by Tobias — December 1, 2007 @ 1196545767

  5. Well, y’know, I aim to please.

    Comment by Mikki — December 1, 2007 @ 1196549602

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