Manila, Philippines — After receiving backlash for being part of Mega magazine Independence Day campaign which focused on equality and pride, also in light of Pride Month for the LGBTQ community, Miss Universe Philippines 2016 Maxine Medina has finally apologized for her statement a year ago about Spain’s Angela Ponce.
Ponce was the first transgender who joined the Miss Universe pageant last year. In an interview with Medina last year, she said Ponce should’ve joined other pageants instead.
“Kung gusto niya talaga sumali, may mga pageants naman for them, na right for them. Let’s give them an idea na mayroon naman talagang pageant for them, para naman equal din sa girls, ‘diba,” she said in a clip that went viral at the time.
Being part of the Mega campaign recently, the video clip has resurfaced on different social media sites anew which prompts social media users to criticize Medina for being part of the campaign that aims equality.
However, in her Instagram account, Medina finally said her apology saying she was just caught in that moment.
“Pride month and yesterday’s #MEGAForAll and #MEGAEqualityBall saw a resurfacing of a statement I made last year regarding my opinion on Angela Ponce, the first transwoman to join Miss Universe. While I was truly caught in a moment, I’ll graciously and humbly say that it was misinformed, and lacking in empathy and understanding. I know first-hand how it is to feel invalidated as I have been bullied all my life, been called names. That’s why I really apologize if this is how you felt and still feel,” she started her lengthy post.
She clarified that she was proud of what Ponce achieved and that is her own way to inspire others.
“It is such a big step forward for us to realize that we shouldn’t be scared of change. We should embrace it because no matter what, we are aiming for the better future for all,” Medina said.
Medina added that she has more to learn and understand and she’s “willing to do the necessary next steps to more understand the importance of equality in beauty pageants through meeting, speaking with and interacting with people who have different opinions than mine.”
“Having been made aware, I am humbling myself as a human being. Now, it is my hope that whether it’s Miss Universe and all the other pageants in the world, women and transwomen continue to dream big and prove themselves that as a woman, you can do anything to be the queens you want to be,” she said.
Medina also posted on her Twitter account saying she not “transphobic” but just concerned to other girls joining the Miss Universe pageant.
“When I took a stand, that’s not for me to disregard Angela. I was concerned about the other girls joining Miss Universe but that doesn’t mean I am transphobic. I am proud of Angela and I respect her and the community,” she wrote.
“If I have offended people, I am sorry but it was never my intention,” Maxine Medina wrote in another Tweet.
What are your thoughts about this?
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