A beauty pageant owned by Donald Trump has booted a contestant out of the competition because she was born male.
Jenna Talackova, 23, was thrown out of the competition after it emerged that she had undergone gender reassignment surgery, despite having successfully reached the finals in the Miss Vancouver pageant. She began hormone therapy when she was 14, and underwent surgical reassignment five years later.
Denis Davila, the national director of the pageant, told the Toronto Star that the rules of the competition were very clear in that the contestants must be a “naturally born female.” He had suspected that Ms Talackova was not born a woman, which she later confirmed.
“She feels like a real girl and she is a real girl. She didn’t expect people to question it,” Mr Davila said in a statement. “She was hoping we could put her back in the competition, but the rules are very clear and there’s no way we can go back on it.”
“I’m disqualified, however I’m not giving up,” Ms Talackova tweeted, though she later locked her Twitter account. “I’m not going to just let them disqualify me over discrimination,” she added.