To truly grasp the spectacular awesomeness of this story, you first have to understand a few things. If you’re an American reader, most of this will be old hat and you can happily skip down a bit, but you’ll miss some snark and a few cheap shots at Alabama. If you’re international (or a ferriner, as we like to call y’all), you might want to stick around a bit.
Alabama has a reputation in the U.S. as being that special person you don’t like to have around when company comes over. It’s not that every person in the state is gun-toting, semi-literate degenerate, but they have quite a few of them. Remember, this is the state where the leading candidate in the recent special election was accused – multiple times – of liking his girls young. Like early teens young. And, amazingly, he still nearly won the election. Thankfully, enough people came to their senses and decided that an accused child molester might not be what they wanted to represent them and Roy Moore – who showed up to vote on horseback – had to ride his horse home in defeat.
It’s a state that sticks to its traditions, even when those traditions are insane and should be left by the wayside.
Speaking of traditions that should probably take a long walk off a short pier, we also have our annual Miss America competition where young women display their value to society based on how well they look in bikinis and evening wear. Again, it’s a traditional thing that probably needs to go away. I may be getting on my soapbox here, but I like to think there’s more to women than beachwear, and Miss America doesn’t exactly hand out awards based on smarts, eloquence, or capabilities. Look good, smile, and wave, and you can win even if you don’t have much going on upstairs. To all the Miss America contestants reading this (I have a huge supermodel following, too), I’m not talking about you, I’m talking about the other girls.
So, if you combine Alabama (home of the not-so-bright traditionalists) and the Miss America competition (congrats, toots, you’ve got a great pair of knockers even if you aren’t too bright), what do you get?
Oddly enough, you get Deidre Downs Gunn, winner of Miss America back in 2005. She represented Alabama and won the diamond tiara or whatever it is they give out there.
But that’s where the story breaks the mold. Deidre Downs Gunn went on to become a practicing medical doctor and recently married her girlfriend in a traditional Southern wedding complete with mini chicken and waffles and probably some other stuff, too. Honestly, anything after mini chicken and waffles is superfluous.
So, why is this a big deal and good news? Well, in addition to breaking the molds of both Alabama and Miss America by being smart enough and dedicated enough to become a doctor, Deidre went onto break another much beloved tradition and marry her girlfriend rather than pretending to be straight. A few years ago, that wouldn’t have even been legal. A few years before that and she would have been lynched.
Equality is a big deal and marrying whoever you want is an important part of that. I guess the whole story just made me happy because it goes to show not all stereotypes are true – even the ones about Alabama and Miss America contestants.
Plus, I found out that mini chicken and waffles are a thing.
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And now, your moment of Zen.