I didn't watch the pageant last night, and I won't comment on the value or virtues of beauty pageants, but I do find it relevant to note that a Lebanese American woman from nearby Dearborn, Michigan (home of Ford Motor Company) was crowned Miss USA last night. Michiganders, of course, are thrilled that good news can come out of our state. But more importantly, it is a reminder that America is a diverse country.
Rima Fakih is an immigrant and a Muslim woman who attended Catholic schools. She is the first Muslim, Arab, and immigrant to be crowned Miss USA. She is a reminder of what America can be at its best, a place of opportunity. It is a reminder that while we may be a Christian majority nation, there is planted in our Constitution the protections that allow people, of whatever background, to find their place in society.
Although I don't normally congratulate beauty contest winners on my blog, I think in this case, because it is a boundary breaking event that reminds the nation that we're not just a bunch of white Christians, I will offer my word of congratulations to a fellow Michigander.