Just this morning, we learn that the Miss America contest has been dropped by CMT (Country Music Television). CMT wants to do more original series, and more music-oriented special events.
So how did we get here? First, let's do the numbers.
Might have had something to do with this year's Miss America ratings on CMT- an estimated 2.39 million viewers vs. 3.07 million in 2006.
The outdated pageant fled to CMT in 2004 after dragging down ABC-TV's ratings to levels the Disney-owned network couldn't abide anymore.
Listen, I am aware that Miss America is no longer a bathing beauty contest. Many, if not most, Miss Americas have had a positive impact, working on behalf of medical research advocacy, education and other causes. And these women have been multi-talented as well.
That despite the fact that many Miss Americas- including the latest one from my home state of Oregon, preached breast-cancer research and treatment even though she publicly backed Republican candidates violently opposed to even baby steps toward a single-payer healthcare system.
But it's not the Republican-tilt that bothers me most about Miss America.
My major problem with the whole Miss America phenomenon, though, is that the ranks of this event don't seem to allow for those without a certain physique. Some would term this "weightism."
Maybe this view is informed by my life experiences, but some of the most beautiful women I have known have been, well, not "height-weight proportionate." Teachers, occupational therapists, hospice nurses, social workers, researchers, poets. Petites, not slender. Zaftig, not thin. But all possessed of beauty and abilities at least equal to those who get chosen for Miss America.
Dropped by CMT? Hee-hee. Listen, Miss America contest, pageant, whatever. If you can't even win over those audiences who watch all-American, country music on television, then you're fadin.'