Note from BW of Brazil: Sometimes, or better yet, most of the time, when stories make the headlines, the back story or the details that don’t make the headlines are often as interesting or even more so than the news that made it into the story. It was the case last year when a number of people expressed their outrage with the few black women competing for the title of Miss Bahia, the Brazilian state having one of the largest black populations in the country. It was also the case of Vera Couto of Rio de Janeiro 50 years ago and Deise Nunes of Porto Alegre, 28 years ago. Although both claimed victories in beauty contests, they also later recollected the racist comments they heard because of their victories or their very presence in these contests. It was also the case in 1977, when Apelonice Lima, a black woman from the city of Passo Fundo, was denied victory in a contest because of her color.
If you haven’t figured out by now that Brazil has a problem with color, the evidence goes much further than only those three stories. Today, we celebrate the recent victory of Karen Porfiro, from Timóteo (a city of about 81,000 residents) in the Miss Minas Gerais competition. Porfiro will now represent her state in September’s Miss Brasil competition. So, what’s the back story here? Well, as has been pointed out in several previous posts, Deise Nunes is the only black woman to have ever been crowned Miss Brasil in its 60 year history. The second detail would be the 30 contestants in the Minas Gerais competition that Porfiro won last week. According to the 2009 census, the population of the southeastern state of Minas Gerais that declares itself branca, or white, is about 45%. Thus, as what happened in Bahia’s competition, how do you explain the overwhelming whiteness of the contestants in the Minas Gerais competition (photos below)? Well, it’s pretty simple: it’s what we call the “dictatorship of whiteness.”
Anyway, congratulations to Karen and good luck in the Miss Brasil contest. Judging from history, you’re definitely going to need it! See more photos of Karen here.
Representative of the city of Miss Timóteo is elected Miss Minas Gerais 2014
Miss Timóteo, Karen Porfiro, was voted Miss Minas Gerais 2014. With the conquest of the title, she will represent the state in the Miss Brazil contest, which will be held in Fortaleza, on September 27.
The event which crowned Karen Porfiro as the candidate of Minas Gerais the in national event occurred late on Wednesday (27), in the capital city of Belo Horizonte.
The second place went to Miss Montes Claros, Stephanie Cheib. The Miss Senafor Firmino and Miss Belo Horizonte, Paloma Marques and Ludmila Werneck, respectively, were in third and fourth place. Núbia Govêa, representative of Poços de Caldas, came in fifth in the competition.
Karen Porfiro responded to the question of the judges of whether she agrees that beauty opens doors. “I agree. Unfortunately, people judge by appearance. But on the other hand, I don’t think it’s unfair. After all, people are not made of only appearance, but also of content,” she explained.
Stephanie Cheib spoke about the conflict between Arabs and Jews. “I would send a message to them saying that fighting each other solves nothing but fight together for peace could save the lives of many,” he said.
The Miss Minas Gerais contest featured performances by Renata Fan and Tony Garrido, lead singer of the reggae band Cidade Negra. The group was also the musical attraction of the night. The body of judges for the Miss Minas Gerais was formed by the 2007 Miss Brasil, Natália Guimarães; blogger Carol Rache; designer Gustavo Grecco; businesswoman Aninha Gutierrez; the model and former BBB (Big Brother Brasil, reality show) Letícia Santiago; host Paulo Navarro; businesswoman Walkyria Magalhães; hair stylist Marcus Martinelli; nutritionist Alessandra Feltre; journalist Jader Khalid; fashion consultant Anna Barroso; director general of Enter, Caio Carvalho; and, finally, Miss Brasil 2013 Jakelyne Oliveira.
Source: Hoje em Dia