Culture

New Miss America says she's glad swimsuit competition was eliminated

New Miss America says she's glad swimsuit competition was eliminated”

The swimsuits are gone, but there has been plenty of controversy surrounding this year's competition that could keep viewers tuning in.

"I said standing up for what you believe in is the most important thing that you can do, and that's what I did", she said, according to the Press of Atlantic City.

"I was told I could never be Miss America because of my size", she said, adding she is comfortable with who she is.

The new Miss America is Nia Franklin.

"We're experiencing a cultural revolution in our country with women finding the courage to stand up and have their voices heard on many issues".

"I grew up at a predominately Caucasian school and there was only five percent minority, and I felt out of place so much because of the color of my skin", Franklin said.

"And I'm happy that I didn't have to do so to win this title tonight because I'm more than just that", Franklin said.

Franklin returns the Miss America crown to NY, which won it three years in a row between 2013 and 2015.

But the seven judges - which included athlete Laila Ali, music producer Randy Jackson, journalist Soledad O'Brien, and musician and TV host Carnie Wilson - ultimately landed on Franklin, who has a fierce passion for music and performance and composed her first song at the age of 6.

Miss Connecticut, Bridget Oei, came in as runner-up for the event, and she received $25,000 in college scholarships.

Instead, contestants were asked an onstage interview question by other contestants.

The outgoing Miss America, Cara Mund, says the two have bullied and silenced her, claims that the women deny.

Both Carlson and Hopper have faced calls to resign from state directors and former Miss Americas.

This year marks the first time the broadcast did not include the swimsuit portion.

A Miss America contestant was selected as one of Thursday's preliminary winners thanks in part to her response about NFL players kneeling in protest during the playing of the national anthem.

Upon taking over at the helm of the Miss America Organization last winter following an email scandal in which former top leaders denigrated the appearance, intellect and sex lives of former Miss Americas, Carlson and Hopper set out to transform the organization, dubbing it "Miss America 2.0".

With the exception of passing the crown to Franklin, Mund was noticeably absent from most of Sunday's ceremony.



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