Jenna Talackova, a 23-year-old stunning blonde competing in the Miss Universe Canada beauty pageant, has been disqualified from the competition after it emerged she was born a man. She is now considering her legal options.
In a statement announcing the decision, the Miss Universe Canada organization says that Jenna simply didn't meet the “requirements,” but it doesn't specify which those might be.
Her profile on the official page of the competition has been erased, and the pageant is refusing to comment further on the situation.
At the same time, Several reports online indicate that this might be a case of discrimination, since the only requirements made available online stipulate that contestants must be Canadian citizens, and older than 18 but not over 27.
Jenna meets them both.
“Jenna Talackova from Vancouver, British Columbia will not compete in the 2012 Miss Universe Canada competition because she did not meet the requirements to compete despite having stated otherwise on her entry form,” the official statement says.
“We do, however, respect her goals, determination and wish her the best,” the organizers add.
Denis Davila, the national director of Miss Universe Canada, says in a separate statement, cited by the Daily Mail, that Jenna lied on her application form, claiming she was born a woman because that's one of the conditions that have to be met when entering the pageant.
Davila insists there are no hard feelings on either side, despite ongoing debate online about whether this is a case of discrimination or not.
“She feels like a real girl and she is a real girl. She didn’t expect people to question it. 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,” Davila says.
Even so, there's nothing but love between both parties.
“Just because she can't compete doesn't mean we stopped loving her,” Davila explains.