Amid all the furor about the Miss World event in Indonesia, one wonders whether we should do away with beauty pageants altogether. In today’s world where women are now heads of government, astronauts, chief executives of global companies and organizations such as the International Monetary Fund, why are women still being judged for their beauty?
Admittedly, there are some other talents apart from physical beauty that are measured in these contests. Some of the winners become United Nations goodwill ambassadors who promote important social causes such children’s education and the fight against HIV, drug abuse and child labor.
Yet the pageants are primarily just a beauty procession. Women are pigeonholed to look, behave and speak in a specific way. Take away the swimsuit category and the event loses its appeal. Sponsors will balk and ratings will