It looks like the controversy over Confederate monuments still hasn’t died down — and now the quarreling has even made its way into the Miss America competition.
On Sunday, pageant judges brought politics front and center when they hit Miss New Jersey Kaitlyn Schoeffel with a question about Southern statues.
The presenters framed the question in a way that seemed to lead the contestant toward a “politically correct” answer… but Miss New Jersey didn’t take the bait, and spoke her mind about the issue.
“A recent poll found slightly over half of Americans favored leaving Confederate statues in place, while others want them removed,” began judge Tara Lipinski, according to Independent Journal Review.
“Keep them or get rid of them? What’s your vote and why?” the judge asked.
It would have been easy — and safe — for the beauty queen to toe the liberal line about banishing Confederate statues forever. Instead, she pointed out their place in history.
“I don’t think that the answer is to get rid of these statues. I think the answer is to relocate them into museums,” Schoeffel replied.
“Because we are truly defined by our country’s history, and I don’t think it’s something that we need to forget,” she clarified. “We need to always remember it and honor our history of America because it truly makes us who we are as Americans. So they should be moved to museums.”
The contestant would go on to win second runner-up, but fell short of the Miss America crown.
That seems like a fairly reasonable answer, but many viewers came unglued at the prospect of remembering American history.
“She said move the Confederate statues to MUSEUMS?” posted one viewer on Twitter. “Get off the stage immediately.”
It was apparently lost on the critics that countless museum displays are intended to preserve history without endorsing it.
For example, a Holocaust museum doesn’t promote genocide, it encourages people to learn from the past. An exhibit about, say, the “Trail of Tears” might allow people to understand past mistakes, without endorsing what happened nearly 200 years ago.
The reality is that monuments remembering the Civil War are just fine where they are, and removing them won’t solve any of America’s problems.
Even among those who support removing them from public spaces, however, museums seem like a fair compromise for Confederate-era statues.
Merely suggesting that we shouldn’t turn historic monuments into rubble shouldn’t be so controversial a viewpoint… and the reaction to Miss New Jersey’s answer should make it clear that erasing history is the true goal of many on the left.
Luckily, not everyone is parroting the “politically correct” narrative about our past — and at least one contestant showed she has a bit of brains and bravery to go with her beauty.
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