June 6th, 2012
09:36 AM ET

Did Miss Pennsylvania quit because pageant rigged, or she opposed transgender entries?

Miss Pennsylvania says she has given up her state crown because the Miss USA pageant was fixed, but organizers say an e-mail she sent this week shows she quit because of her disapproval over allowing transgender participants.

"I will relay to you the reasoning behind my resignation. I witnessed another contestant who said she saw the list of the Top 5 BEFORE THE SHOW EVER STARTED proceed to call out in order who the Top 5 were before they were announced on stage," Sheena Monnin wrote on her Facbeook page Tuesday.

"Apparently the morning of June 3rd she saw a folder lying open to a page that said 'FINAL SHOW Telecast, June 3, 2012' and she saw the places for Top 5 already filled in."

Monnin said she waited to see how things would play out.

"After it was indeed the Top 5 I knew the show must be rigged; I decided at that moment to distance myself from an organization who did not allow fair play and whose morals did not match my own," she wrote on Facebook.

But the Miss Universe Organization said that while Monnin did resign following Sunday night's pageant, her description of the events and why she quit is false.

"The Miss Universe Organization can confirm the resignation of the Pennsylvania titleholder after she did not place in the Top 16 at the Miss USA pageant. In an e-mail to state pageant organizers (below), she cited the Miss Universe Organization’s policy regarding transgendered contestants, implemented two months ago, as the reason for her resignation," the organization said in a statement. "Today she has changed her story by publicly making false accusations claiming that the pageant was fixed; however, the contestant she privately sourced as her reference has vehemently refuted her most recent claim.

"We are disappointed that she would attempt to steal the spotlight from Olivia Culpo of Rhode Island on her well-deserved Miss USA win."

According to the e-mail released by the Miss Universe organization, Monnin sent her resignation after 4 p.m. ET Monday before writing on her Facbeook page, saying the organization had strayed by allowing transgender participants in the pageant.

"I am officially and irrevocably resigning the title of Miss Pennsylvania USA 2012," the e-mail released by Miss Universe said. "I refuse to be part of a pageant system that has so far and so completely removed itself from its foundational principles as to allow and support natural born males to compete in it. This goes against ever moral fiber of my being.  I believe in integrity, high moral character, and fair play, none of which are part of this system any longer.

"I hereby return the title of Miss Pennsylvania USA 2012."

Monnin hasn't commented on the release of the e-mail.

The topic of whether transgender participants should be allowed in pageants entered the spotlight after a controversy in the Canadian version of the pageant. Jenna Talackova, 23, forced Donald Trump and his Miss Universe Canada pageant to end its ban on transgender contestants. Talackova fell short of the national title at the pageant.

And in Sunday's Miss USA pageant, the topic surfaced in the question-and-answer part of the show when Rob Kardashian read aloud a question sent in by a viewer via Twitter for Culpo, Miss Rhode Island and the eventual pageant winner.

"Would you feel it would be fair that a transgender woman wins the Miss USA title over a natural-born woman?" the question asked.

Culpo quickly embraced the Miss Universe decision to allow transgender women but also acknowledged why some people may not feel comfortable with it.

"I do think that that would be fair, but I can understand that people would be a little apprehensive to take that road because there is a tradition of natural-born women, but today where there are so many surgeries and so many people out there who have a need to change for a happier life, I do accept that because I believe it's a free country," Culpo said.

soundoff (312 Responses)
  1. Jerry

    XY chromosome pairs = MALE. No matter how much mutilation (surgery) one goes through it cannot alter that one simple biological fact. Red is STILL red even if some choose to call it "blue".

    June 6, 2012 at 10:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • There are x x y and x y y

      1 in 5000 people are born with a mixture of gene talia......Why do you people have to put down people who God created just to make yourselves feel safe......Yes you got x x or x y but they have more......Surgery is their choice and its none of your business which s e x they wish to be......Some live in such fear and self hate that they never have normal relationships and you'd never know that they have a mixture of both s e x ual organs....

      June 7, 2012 at 5:19 am | Report abuse |
  2. HAttie

    A cousin who won our state pageant ,stated the same thing. This seems to be a well known fact,but most are not talking. Why risk the scholarship,for what they have already won?

    June 6, 2012 at 11:32 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Carlos

    well she's not so cute anyways

    June 7, 2012 at 12:36 am | Report abuse |
  4. HIDE BEHIND

    All I can say is that, I am glad that in my youth we knew what was male and female and what was an undicided, most of the time that is.
    Of course being a country bumpkin we had some odd charaters but live and let live and it was only wimmen of the churches that got all uppity,but then being a man was more than just an apendage
    On trips to the city though it was a different matter, seems like damn near every male was afraid a man might get em, and to prove they were real men they either made fun of what today we call gays, beat the heck out of them, or go to church and damn them to "He...", well you know where.
    Any better today: by the hissy fits so prevalent, by some males and females,you'd think they were cats and dogs and not humans

    June 7, 2012 at 1:30 am | Report abuse |
  5. Miss Detroit aka nappy

    Ya all know ya want a woman with a big ole butt that you can tail gate on. A woman with buckshot nappy hair and yellow eyes and some gold in her teeth..A woman who has a bush thick as a jungle on her cooch and a nice rotted tuna smell to boot. And why im thinking aboot it...give me ur paycheck and pay for my hairweave and nails and u may git some of this blk coochie

    June 7, 2012 at 2:26 am | Report abuse |
  6. Trump

    Trump trying his best Phineas T. Barnum imitation.....I've always thought it was rigged as do alot of other people....A lawsuit will net you little Donald.....You don't have a stellar reputation to begin with.....However, as in the 'Madonna Theory", all plublicity, good or bad is really good for the wallet.....sooo its a trade off....

    June 7, 2012 at 4:19 am | Report abuse |
  7. Triple x

    There are people born with extra y and x chromosomes that go by a name the CNN filters wont allow.....Why do you people assume its a desire.....They are born with both parts....Its their choice... 1 in 5000 births are this way....They are gods children too........

    June 7, 2012 at 4:58 am | Report abuse |
    • major tom

      "Hermaphrodite" isn't allowed by CNN?

      June 7, 2012 at 5:53 am | Report abuse |
  8. Flamespeak

    "I refuse to be part of a pageant system that has so far and so completely removed itself from its foundational principles as to allow and support natural born males to compete in it. This goes against ever moral fiber of my being. I believe in integrity, high moral character, and fair play, none of which are part of this system any longer."

    Now, when I read this story earlier from a different news source the quote wasn't put together like this.

    The line of "This goes against ever moral fiber of my being. I believe in integrity, high moral character, and fair play, none of which are part of this system any longer." was indeed said, but it was said after she expressed her anger over finding out about a leaked list of the five finalists.

    The earlier parts of the quote didn't even surface until after she had quit and was made public by Trump and co.

    Now I come to CNN and see this linked all together in one blurb.

    June 7, 2012 at 5:27 am | Report abuse |
  9. unowhoitsme

    Miss US has ALWAYS been rigged...it's no contest. It's another professional sport with an already made winner.

    June 7, 2012 at 6:16 am | Report abuse |
  10. fernace

    I see the trolls have been busy. My only post was @ 6:29pm, yesterday! All others were from "the trolls"! It's always interesting to wake up & find out I've been "blogging in my sleep"! Hmmmm!!

    June 7, 2012 at 8:28 am | Report abuse |
  11. Seville

    cleareye1, are you SERIOUS!! How long have you be a TGer

    The TG contestant was a 'man.' he was always never a woman because he was born with male genitalia, a problem that really can't be corrected.

    If HE becomes pregnat the NATURAL way, then and only then will he be consodered a woman!!

    June 7, 2012 at 9:10 am | Report abuse |
    • lol

      "If HE becomes pregnat the NATURAL way, then and only then will he be consodered a woman!!"

      So, is an infertile woman then not truly a woman? Obviously this woman wouldn't be able to become pregnant the "natural way", so by your logic she's a man? Or, genderless?

      June 7, 2012 at 9:39 am | Report abuse |
  12. slrman

    More holier than thou nonsense from an obviously religious reich member. Or perhaps she was just upset because the transgendered person made a better-looking woman than she did.

    June 7, 2012 at 10:52 am | Report abuse |
  13. mccgeno

    who cares?

    June 7, 2012 at 10:54 am | Report abuse |
  14. Rabbit One

    i personally question whether or not in all fairness transgenders should run against actual women – because when the transgenders do run it invariably comes with so much newness and hype and expectancy and finger pointing that it then becomes a case of affirmative action rather than a contest of fairness – we need a pageant specific to transgenders so that they too are empowered but not at the expense of born women

    June 7, 2012 at 11:31 am | Report abuse |
  15. Jeff R

    Can does a transgender male (female->male) have the right to be drafted in time of war?

    June 7, 2012 at 12:13 pm | Report abuse |
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