The backlash from The View’s comments about Miss. America 2015 contestant, Miss. Colorado, is still all over social media. The View’s impetuous and uneducated comments has united nurses and non-nurses alike...but what about Ms. Colorado, Kelley Johnson? What did she do?
I attempted to do a pageant in the past. I’m, simply put, just not a pageant girl, but I enjoyed the experience with one of my close friends. The biggest issue for me was the talent section. Sure, I have many “talents.” Long distance running could be a talent of mine. I can create just about anything you can ask for with paint or cloth. More than anything, I would say my ability to compile my creativity into activities and relationships with my ninth grade English students is my best talent of all. Teaching is my passion, my career, and my talent. The issue here is the required pageant “talent” must be “performable.” The contestant must exhibit this talent within a two-five minute time frame on stage. None of my talents are “performable” or could be considered “talents” in the world of pageantry.
Kelley Johnson challenged the limits of pageantry. I have seen many social media posts criticize her saying, “nursing is a career, not a talent!” I think the fact that Kelley’s career is her talent and passion is amazing. Also, she found a great way to express her talent: by being herself (which is also foreign to pageants). She wore her uniform that she wears on a daily basis and spoke her heart. It is unfortunate that the archaic world of pageantry (and The View) can only see women as objects that perform.