MISS EARTH organization seems far from over when it comes to facing controversies. Since it started hosting international delegates for the 2017 edition of the annual Miss Earth pageant search here in the Philippines last month, the organization attracted a lot of controversial issues the past weeks until now.
The most recent is the negative reactions the organization is getting for its swimsuit preliminary competition held at Century Park Hotel in Manila on October 18. Designed to be “Beauty of Figure and Form” pre-judging round, enthusiasts tagged the event “inappropriate” for asking the candidates walk in white two-piece bikinis with their faces covered by a white veil.
“Beauty of Figure and Form” is part of the rounds in the entire pageant that include “Poise and Beauty of Face” and “Intelligence Competition.” It was first introduced in Miss Philippines-Earth 2017 earlier this year and as early as that, the format was criticized for “objectifying” the women.
Fashion specialist Voltaire Tayag once said the veil “sends the wrong message about women.”
“It disregarded the women’s confidence and their personalities.” With their faces covered in veils, these candidates failed to “interact with the audience and the camera” which were two vital aspects on where “a woman’s strength lies.”
Miss Earth Organization however responded to criticisms saying the said round was intended “to promote strict impartiality during pre-judging.” The veils “served a double purpose” as aside from fairly basing the judgment on the body figures alone, it was formatted that way “to introduce the girls with dramatic flair.”
What do you think about that portion, guys?
Too short for the pageant
The pageant organizer was also criticized for sending South Africa’s delegate, Irini Moutzouris home days before the finals. Irini was disqualified because she is deemed too short for the international competition. Miss Earth website says candidates should be at least 5’5″ (165.10 cm) tall. Irini only stands 5 feet-3 inches.
Irini’s home country is prepared to welcome her, Ella Bella Leite, National Director of Miss Earth South Africa said in a statement.
“We accept this as their prerogative and have decided to rather bring our ambassador back home to support our end-of-year programmes,” Leite said.
Phone went missing
Earlier last week, one of the candidates, Miss Earth Belarus 2017 Polli Cannabis shared on her social media account that she was robbed in a mall in Manila. The news made rounds online, soliciting negative feedbacks to the organization and the Philippines as a whole. Good thing that the lady was showered by concerns from Filipinos online that she later appreciated.
Polli then shared on her post, “Dear friends! Philippine people are very supportive and empathizing, I got a lot of care and nice messages. I feel much better. Thank you so much! I borrowed a phone and now in connection with my friends and relatives. Philippines police will try to do their best to help me.
“The are several bad persons in every country, but it is not a face of a nation. It could happen to everyone, so, please, be careful! I love Philippines and Philippine people. Thank you for being so empathizing.”
Polli was reportedly been given a cellphone replacement after that. This year is the first time Belarus has a representative to the 17-year old pageant.
From the Past
Who would forget the controversies that surrounded the Philippines’ bet for Miss Earth 2016, Imelda Schweighart last year? Schweighart called the reigning Miss Earth 2016 Katherine Espín of Ecuador “fake” caught in a video? The said act prompted to resign as Miss Earth Philippines 2016.
The Miss Earth 2017 competition is far from over. While we are still two weeks away from the finals that will take place at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City on November 4, we can only wish all the candidates well. May the best candidate win.
We also wish the organization more power as it champions one of the most important causes there is — the protection of our Mother Earth.