(RepublicanDaily.org) – Social media is abuzz after a white woman won the recent regional Miss Universe competition for Zimbabwe. The pageant resumed in the country following a hiatus of more than two decades.
Brooke Bruk-Jackson, a part-time model from the Harare region, will represent Zimbabwe in the international Miss Universe pageant. El Salvador is the host of this year’s international competition, which will be held in November.
Massive online outrage exploded following the coronation, with much of the criticism leveled against the “audacity” of the candidate herself (Bruk-Jackson, who is 21, calls herself a “pure-bred Zimbabwean”), but also of the Miss Universe Zimbabwe organization.
With only a very small percentage of the population of Zimbabwe being white, many called out the disparity reflected by the win. “Miss ‘Universe’ Zimbabwe should be ‘universally’ representative” of Zimbabwe’s population but “she isn’t,” wrote a user. Another said that Bruk-Jackson could not become the role model for young girls that Miss Universe winners are supposed to be since a vast majority of Zimbabwean girls do not share the color of her skin.
Others called Bruk-Jackson “European”, while others said that she gave off “British vibes.” Others pointed to the country’s history as a British colony and said that the social sickness of black people being considered second-class (or in the pageant’s case, runner-ups) to whites was not completely dead. Others still called attention to the pageant’s owner in the country, who is white, which they say was the “tragic” reason why, despite of “all those beautiful melanated women,” a white woman won a “contest for black people.” Another commenter called the “Barbie beauty” win an “assault” on the women of Zimbabwe.
For her part, Bruk-Jackson defended her win by saying that persons should not be defined by the color of their skin. She also posted a picture on Instagram showing her wearing a native costume, which she said was a reflection of Zimbabwe’s and the human race’s diversity.
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