Image for Trump says trans beauty queen's OK

Trump says trans beautyqueen's OK

Donald Trump has now officially stated that transgender women can now enter his Miss Universe pageant, following a furor over the brief disqualification of Canada contestant Jenna Talackova.

When officials of the Canadian contest discovered Talackova, 23, was born male, they claimed she lied on her application form and barred her from the pageant, leading to international criticism.

Then they reversed their decision, saying she could now enter the pageant next month. If triumphant, she will be put forward to compete with girls from all around the world in the official Miss Universe 2012 pageant later this year.

But it was important to get Trump’s official go-ahead, which has now been given. The Miss Universe organisation is now apparently in the process of changing its rules to specify that transgender women are welcome in the contest, he says.

America’s respected Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation group has welcomed the decision, which involved some speedy dialogue between them and the Miss Universe organisation.

“Jenna and all of the LGBT advocates who have called for this change and spoken out in support of transgender women are to be commended,” says GLAAD spokesperson Herndon Graddick.

“At a time when transgender people are still routinely denied equal opportunities in housing, employment and medical care, today’s decision is in line with the growing levels of public support for transgender people across the country.”

Talackova spoke to Barbara Walters about the controversy and her personal journey below.

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