Posted by: alliehope | April 30, 2009

True Beauty

I promised myself that I wouldn’t touch this one with a “thirty-nine and a half-foot pole” (to borrow a lyric from How the Grinch Stole Christmas). But thanks to this, I have to.

I’m not going to bother here recounting the story (the link I provided does that). What I’m after is an even deeper question: what’s the point of the beauty pageant, anyway?

I think I know what the point is (warning: my feminist colors will betray themselves here). The point, as I’m seeing it, is to parade these living Barbie dolls around in outfits that would get most people arrested for indecent exposure to send the message to women that it doesn’t matter how smart you are, how brave you are in standing up for your beliefs, how determined you are to make a positive difference, your ultimate value is how good you look in a bikini.

Excuse me for saying this, but that’s f’ed up. And it’s even more messed up when Christian women don’t seem to be bothered to ask the real question of why beauty pageants are even necessary in this day and age where women can be and accomplish anything. Why aren’t they pointing to women like Michelle Obama or Kay Warren as better role models than some, I’m sorry to say this, bimbo in a bikini?

Ultimately this indicates our willingness as Christians (and I’m guilty of this) to buy into the world’s definition of beauty, one that, unfortunately, denigrates women. If we affirm that women are cobearers of the image of God, then why are we so willing to celebrate a culture that turns them into sex objects? Can we turn our back on this whole ugly affair?

I think we can. On this one, we can’t have it both ways. We can’t praise Prejean and hold her up to our daughters and younger sisters and younger friends, and yet at the same time buy into the lies that she represents as “Miss California”. We need to remember what the writer of Proverbs said: Charm and grace are deceptive, and beauty is vain [because it is not lasting], but a woman who reverently and worshipfully fears the Lord, she shall be praised!
(Proverbs 31:30; The Amplified Bible).

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Responses

  1. This makes me miss our conversations. Heh.


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