Gretchen Carlson, who made headlines for her dealings with sexual harassment during her tenure at Fox News, has been named the new chair of the Miss America Pageant.
The move follows a Huffington Post reported that revealed a series of sexist emails from the Miss America Organization’s previous CEO, Sam Haskell, and other board members, in which they discussed Miss America contestants’ sex lives and physical appearances. Haskell has since resigned from his post, as did Miss America President and COO Jeff Randle.
“Everyone has been stunned by the events of the last several days, and this has not been easy for anyone who loves this program,” Carlson said in a statement to NBC News. “In the end, we all want a strong, relevant Miss America and we appreciate the existing board taking the steps necessary to quickly begin stabilizing the organization for the future.”
Don’t get me wrong: A former Miss America contestant herself, Gretchen Carlson will likely be great at this job. But why are pretending that Miss America and pageants in general are relevant or not sexist in and of themselves? Why are we so shocked that a bunch of creeps who preside over a glorified bikini contest are douchebags? Can’t we just pretend Miss America isn’t a thing until it, you know, isn’t a thing? Can we all stop entering these pageants and focus on actually making a difference in the world without having to slather on self tanner and contour our boobs first?