Miss Teen USA has officially removed the bathing suit category from its pageant. The switch is aimed at “highlighting a healthy lifestyle” for younger viewers, said Michael Antinoro, the head of original content at IMG, a talent agency that last year bought the Miss Universe Organization, including Miss Teen USA, a contest for 14- to 19-year-old girls.
But there are no plans to remove the controversial, swimsuit category from the organization’s competitions for adult women, Miss USA. and Miss Universe, he said in a telephone interview.
Anther reason they gave for scrapping the swimsuit category is to show their support for feminism and equality and to make women feel less exploitative. They said the athletic wear will create more focuse on the importance of physical fitness for its younger competitors.
Paula Shugart, the president of the Miss Universe Organization, said in a letter to state directors this week that the pageant was “committed to continuing to evolve in ways that celebrate women’s strength, confidence and beauty for years to come.”
“This decision reflects an important cultural shift we’re all celebrating that empowers women who lead active, purposeful lives and encourage those in their communities to do the same,” she wrote. “Our hope is that this decision will help all of Miss Teen USA’s fans recognize these young women for the strong, inspiring individuals they are.”
Source: NY Times