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. Imjustsaying

    So it is possible although improbable to have an all (naturally born) male Miss USA? We live in a very odd world. Since this article hit on two topics, my second comment would be that we wouldn't be surprised if it is in fact rigged. I imagine much like many reality television shows, there is at least a predetermined highly weighted outcome before the show even starts. They want to make money so why not throw in a little drama. My only argument to this claim is that these women have state names associated with them so rigging could cause a bit more of an issue than just drama. I watched the show and I thought the final winners made sense in the order that both they were picked and that they won.

    June 6, 2012 at 10:50 am | Report abuse |
  2. Jim

    Transgender doesn't always mean someone had a surgery to change their junk. Some are born with both..

    June 6, 2012 at 10:50 am | Report abuse |
    • really???

      And being born with both, they've had surgery to express one or the other moron

      June 6, 2012 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
    • jdupree05

      That is highly unlikely and makes me want to throw up.

      As to whoever wrote about "2000 year old fairy book," how immature of a response that was. End of story.

      June 6, 2012 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
    • banasy¬©

      So puke, (because that's a mature answer, too) and be thankful you weren't born that way.

      June 6, 2012 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
    • ZombieEthics

      Hermaphrodites are not "trans-genders"... They are sterile, and possess BOTH genitalia... I don't think your comment applies to a naturally-born male, snipping, and pageanting as a woman.

      June 6, 2012 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
  3. HWB

    Both reasons in this article are valid for quiting. Rigged or transgender make no difference. Both are valid reason to quit. What's next transgender bathrooms, gay bathrooms, animal bathrooms. Where does it end??????

    June 6, 2012 at 10:52 am | Report abuse |
    • Matt

      I am a teacher and transgendered bathrooms are already a consideration we need to make. But we're probably just wasting our time...after all, who cares if an adolescent doesn't feel safe using a certain bathroom....who deserves a right to privacy in a bathroom??!?!?!?! Idiots.

      June 6, 2012 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
    • Throw the first stone

      Let me ask the 'holier than thou' out here the followiing questions.
      Do you believe in God?
      Do you believe him to be perfect?
      If so, then why do you question what He has made in his image; a human with some male parts, but the rest of the person in female.

      Have you stopped and ask Him why he has made people, in his image, that do not conform to your idea of a human?
      Or, are you just sheep being led off a cliff by a false god, your pastor/cleric/father.

      Now, to challenge your beliefs to see how shallow they are.

      When you see a lady with a short hair cut (remember it has only been about 50 years since women started keeping their hair shorter) or hairy legs, or a mustache – do you tell her that it/she disgust you?

      When you knownly comitt adultery or lust after soemthing of your neighbor or provide false witness – does it disgust you?

      When you judge others do you ask God for forgiveness?

      Lastly, have you provided a sacrifice to God?
      Have you beaten your slaves? Do you even own any slaves?
      Have you beaten your daughter or wife for their transgression to keep them on the staright an narrow?

      June 6, 2012 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Steve Johnson

    why not just have a separate pageant for the trannies? who do these people think they are? they do better at the county fair side shows, keep them there.

    June 6, 2012 at 10:52 am | Report abuse |
    • Matt

      It's ironic that you know the slang name, "trannies", for the transgendered population....seems like you've got pretty intimate knowledge of a subject you claim to be utterly horrified by.....I wonder what further hypocrisy your internet viewing history might further reveal....

      June 6, 2012 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |
  5. asdf

    "I believe in integrity, high moral character, and fair play, none of which are part of this system any longer."

    Yes, gone are the days of the pageant when the woman born with the biggest cans and longest legs and with enough money to take care of her body and pay to enter pageants throughout childhood could prove her high moral character by showing how being beautiful is the most important thing in the world.

    June 6, 2012 at 10:53 am | Report abuse |
  6. M.E.

    She's only a beauty queen, not like she has a brain in her head or anything. Good riddance to bad rubbish.

    June 6, 2012 at 10:55 am | Report abuse |
  7. jj

    Beauty pageants are foolishness anyway.

    June 6, 2012 at 10:55 am | Report abuse |
  8. Ed

    Interesting. I don't know what her real reason for quitting was, but notice that the article never follows up at all on the allegation that the top 5 were picked before the show. It's either lousy journalism or further evidence of CNN's left bias, or both. Hey, wonder if they'll follow up on one or both of those?

    June 6, 2012 at 10:56 am | Report abuse |
    • MarkinFL

      ""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."

      They did follow up and found nothing to support her claim.

      June 6, 2012 at 11:21 am | Report abuse |
  9. LarryB

    Enough with all of these anachronistic pageants, anyway. Why anyone cares about them at all is a mystery to me.

    June 6, 2012 at 10:56 am | Report abuse |
  10. becky, Las Vegas

    IF she resigned in part due to the transgender policy, the pageant doesn't need her. It shows she is ugly inside which over shadows ANY physical beauty she might have.

    June 6, 2012 at 10:57 am | Report abuse |
  11. SkepticalOne

    That melon head birther Trump owns the pageant. I would think a racist like you would be a fan of his.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:00 am | Report abuse |
    • Robyn

      What a horrible thing to say about melons.

      June 7, 2012 at 6:31 pm | Report abuse |
  12. James

    I am against so called beauty pageant of any kind but if we are going to have them for meaningless entertainment, they should at least compare apples to apples. So, natural v/s surgically altered, caucasian v/s caucasian, asian v/s asian, black v/s black, mixed race v/s mixed race, transgender v/s transgender etc etc. you get my gist.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
  13. maggotfist

    Wow, what an awful article.
    Poor logic. Does not tie one event to a claim. CNN slides further.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |
  14. really???

    This transgender thing in pageants doesn't have ANYTHING to do with bigotry. These things to a large extent have to do with external beauty...yes, superficial, but it is what it is. If we allow this sort of cosmetic surgery into the equation, we've nullified the whole notion of external 'beauty.' It would be safe to say that a transgender contestant has had some cosmetic surgery, to say the least, and therefore should not be allowed to compete. This should apply to natural born women with breast implants, etc. Beauty contests should be based upon natural assets.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
  15. truth1063

    "I am a teacher and transgendered bathrooms are already a consideration we need to make. But we're probably just wasting our time...after all, who cares if an adolescent doesn't feel safe using a certain bathroom....who deserves a right to privacy in a bathroom??!?!?!?! Idiots."

    THIS IS WHAT IS WRONG WITH AMERICA. TYPICAL TEACHERS THESE DAYS ARE BLITHERING FOOLS LIKE THIS ONE.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
    • MarkinFL

      Well, luckily the teachers in my kids schools do not seem to be like this.

      June 6, 2012 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
    • Funny

      What part of tolerance for other's is bad? You are not hurting/harn=ming anyone by thinking your way so it's ok. Same goes for someone who is more free-thinking. As long as noone is harmed let it be. But I guess not everyone can see individuals for what they are, individual and wonderful in their own way.

      June 7, 2012 at 4:00 pm | Report abuse |
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