Despite the presence of one of the first transgender teen characters on prime-time television on the acclaimed Canadian teen soap Degrassi: The Next Generation, our neighbors to the North are less progressive on transgender rights than Degrassi would have us believe, if the recent controversy over a booted, transgendered Miss Universe Canada contestant is any indication. According to the Vancouver Sun, the finalist, Jenna Talackova from Vancouver (above), was removed from the competition after pageant officials discovered that Talackova was born male and had sex reassignment surgery in 2010.

Although Talackova's profile was present on the Miss Universe Canada website just a few days ago, it was abruptly yanked last week. Last Friday, the Donald Trump-owned pageant organization issued a statement claiming that Talackova "did not meet the requirements to compete despite having stated otherwise on her entry form" (jeez, I didn't know there was a question on official pageant application forms that asked you if you were born with the "bun" or the "hot dog;" the more you know, I guess). They then went on to add they "respect her goals, determination and wish her the best."

Talackova has yet to issue a public statement on her exit from the pageant, and she's expected to release one next week after she consults with her lawyer. But I doubt that it's going to say anything much different than "Whatever, you guys suck and I'm hot and fabulous and definitions of what it means to be a woman and to have gender are fluid and rapidly changing, so you beauty-pageant bitches need to get with the program." So give it to 'em good, Talackova. They deserve it for continuing to hold onto antiquated ideas, and for spoiling my illusions about Degrassi being an accurate depiction of life in Canada. 

Commentarium (12 Comments)

Mar 25 12 - 8:12pm

Do I think this should have happened to her? No. On the other hand, railing against a beauty pageant for having an "antiquated notion of femininity" is like railing against the sun for being hot.

Mar 25 12 - 9:40pm

Um how is a Donald Trump owned patent company reflecting how progressive Canadians are?
He isn't Canadian.

Mar 26 12 - 12:57am

Why issue a statement pretending to "respect her goals" when they clearly do NOT respect her goals?

Mar 26 12 - 5:13am

Why should this man be allowed to compete in a woman's competition? Sexual reassignment surgery is entirely cosmetic and hormone therapy doesn't change an immutable fact: Talackova is genetically male. Talackova, for instance, would not be allowed to compete in most competitive athletics as a woman.

Mar 26 12 - 11:49am
not so

Actually, she would be allowed to compete in most athletic competitions as a woman, as long as she had the surgery long enough ago and been under hormone treatment for the specified time. This has been so since 2004. Estrogen therapy effectively renders the muscle mass, VO2 max, and other physical assets conferred by testosterone moot.

Mar 27 12 - 3:51am

most beauty pageant competitions actually do have you sign a form which says "i have never been married, given birth, I was worn a woman" etc.
This is standard practice, so she did lie to them if she signed one of these...

Mar 26 12 - 8:32am

EJ Dickinson never misses the chance to go wildly, errrr, um half-cocked over a trifle..

Mar 26 12 - 11:19am

I'd hit it. Or let it hit me. Or whatever.

Mar 31 12 - 2:33am

Can't say I'm sad. I used to work with her, and she was always the most arrogant, superficial drama queen imaginable. She didn't work here long, thankfully. It's really hard to get fired from a union job... but she managed it in 6 months. Even the union won't save you when you show up for work an hour late twice a week because you were busy doing your makeup.

Apr 05 12 - 5:21am

And therecyou have it my friend. There you have it. You can pin all the stars you want to an underdog to make copy but if ultimately they are just unlikeable then there's not much that can be done.

Mar 31 12 - 8:35am
Eat Something

Trans- status or not, she is too skinny. Period.