MANILA, Philippines -- While the Miss Universe pageant has opened its doors to transgender contestants, pageant-loving Filipinos have expressed mixed views on the matter.
Starting in 2013, transgendered women, or men who have had a sex change, will be allowed to join the international beauty contest.
Canadian Jenna Talackova, who was initially barred when it was revealed she was not born a female, will be participating this year.
Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights groups have hailed the move as a stepping stone for gender equality.
In the predominantly Catholic Philippines, there are many pageants held for gay men, including transgenders. While existing beauty pageants for women such as Binibining Pilipinas do not specifically state that transgendered women cannot join, there has so far not been any reported attempts by them to participate.
This morning, we asked netizens via @ABSCBNnews on Twitter their opinions on the matter.
Some tweets from users:
@theadjourney: Sorry to say transgenders should not [be] allowed, I’m not discriminating [against] the gays, they should understand that they are not females.
@AskRingo: No they just need to make their own beauty pageant. A good name can be Mr./Ms. Transgender Universe :)
@iamSPRAnna: We shouldn't change the idea of what makes up a typical Miss Universe. Let us honor tradition.
@iveray: Papayag din kaya ang Olympics kung sasali sa larong pambabae ang isang transgender?
@joycesubitong: It's not fair for the other contestants who were born girls (they didn't undergo major changes in their body )
@theadjourney: When you say the word 'miss' meaning [she's] a female, not a transgender, it's not about the equality, it's about reality.
@LadyMuyBonita: It hurts! Why do we have to compete with men for [pageant titles]?
@Iska0310: Yes bcoz transgenders nowadays are prettier than women, smarter & more confident. Anyhow beauty is not about gender.
@PerciCen: Yes, it's about time. Trangenders are women. Pageants should keep up with the times.
@dennis roda: It’s a move towards greater diversity.
@flamark_915: if the Phl pageants are under the int'l pageant rules they should. I'm not saying I agree morally though. Rules are rules.
@TreasuresLover: If transgenders are allowed to join #MissUniverse then why women with kids are being disqualified from the pageant?
@Pablo_Neri: they should also allow mothers, unwed mothers to join. Generally, they should take away all the restrictions.
@akopaba27: edi mas ok ... para mas makilala pa ang mga bading at mas madaling tanggapin ng buong mundo
More tweets about the topic: