beauty pageants

Transgender women in Miss World? Sophia Senoron weighs in

Earning the third highest score in Miss World Philippines 2017, Sophia Senoron, 17, won the Miss Multinational Philippines 2017 title. Currently, she is in India to represent the Philippines in the inaugural Miss Multinational 2017-2018.

On October 18, 2017, Senoron attended the send-off party for Miss World Philippines 2017 Laura Lehmann and Reina Hispanoamericana Filipinas 2017 Teresita Marquez at Annabel’s restaurant in Quezon City, Metro Manila. During the event, I asked Senoron five random questions, one of which was whether or not transgender women should be allowed to join Miss World.

“Yes. I think the perception is wrong,” Senoron said. “Transgender women are not transgender. Transgender women are women because that’s what they achieve. They may not be born a woman but that moment you start your process, you are a woman.”

“So it’s not just about, it’s not your gender,” Senoron explained. “It’s, ‘I was born a woman or I wasn’t born a woman but I am a woman.’ So if the Miss World Philippines, if the requirement is to be a woman, I don’t see that as illegitimate. I think that is very consistent to the policy and to the rules.”

Miss World Philippines is a very understanding and progressive organization, Senoron pointed, but accommodating transgender women in the beauty pageant will still be affected by how the audience and other people will perceive it.

“It’s how the audience will look at it and how you perceive transgender women or women in general,” Senoron concluded. “I don’t want to look at them as someone different because the overall goal was to remove that gender and become a woman, as a woman.”

On February 26, 2018, the Miss Multinational 2017-2018 winner will be crowned at the Kingdom of Dreams in Gurugram, Haryana. Attending the coronation night to support Senoron is Miss World Philippines national director Arnold Vegafria.

Senoron is attending San Beda University, a private Roman Catholic university run by the Benedictine monks in Mendiola, Manila, Philippines. She is studying Financial Management.

At San Beda University, Senoron is a varsity debater. Watch how she answered my on-the-spot random questions here:


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