Miss America Rhetorical Analysis

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James Michael Nichols invites readers of The Huffington Post to “Meet the First Openly Gay Miss America Contestant In History”. “Missouri Woman Is Miss America Pageant’s First openly Lesbian Contestant”, writes Christine Hauser for The New York Times. Monica Hesse of The Washington Post asks “What’s a nice lesbian like you doing at Miss America?” All of these titles share a common theme. They celebrate the sexuality of the latest Miss America Pageant winner, Erin O’Flaherty. It appears that the lesbian gay bisexual transsexual (LGBT) community is finally getting the recognition and acceptance it deserves, but what many journalists fail to realize is that the media coverage from this event unintentionally works against the development of true…show more content…
Each of these women labored for they statuses but are now only remembered as their single defining characteristics. The sad reality is that O’Flaherty will no doubt end up on this list of names to be remembered as the first openly gay Miss America contestant.
In O’Flaherty’s case, she entered the competition fully aware and prepared for the attention the media would bring to her sexuality. Unfortunately widely covered media inadvertently sets a standard for the whole nation to glorify and focus on LGBT community members, solely because of their sexuality. Not only is the media coverage in conflict with O’Flaherty’s personal interests, it also shines an unnecessary spotlight on other members of the LGBT community that would prefer not to be defined by their sexuality.
True equality for the LGBT community will not be achieved until they are able to go about their lives the same way heterosexual people can. Calling attention to their sexuality, in a positive manner or not, prevents a normal livelihood for the nine million Americans who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or gay. The best way to support this community would be to give them the same treatment that we would anyone else, without bias or judgement based on their sexual

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