Miss California USA and Miss Texas USA, who are both of Mexican descent, are not backing down from participating in the Miss USA competition despite remarks made by 2016 presidential candidate Donald Trump about Mexican immigrants.
“We were not going to let our states down. It’s taken a lot of hard work and determination to get here, and we’re just really focused right now on the pageant and focused on Miss USA and being here. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” Miss Texas USA, Ylianna Guerra, said in an interview with Entertainment Tonight (ET).
Miss California USA, Natasha Martinez, echoed her sentiment, adding that she never once even considered dropping out of the pageant, adding that she feels “very passionate about my family’s background and their ability to grow in this country.” Martinez told ET her mother had arrived in the United States at the age of 12.
Guerra added that the pageant is not about politics but about showcasing beauty, confidence and education alongside community service.
On Monday, Trump provided the following statement on Monday to clarify remarks he made during his 206 presidential announcement:
When Mexico (meaning the Mexican Government) sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you (pointing to the audience). They’re not sending you (pointing again). They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems to us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people! But I speak to border guards and they tell us what we’re getting. And it only makes common sense. They’re sending us not the right people. It’s coming from more than Mexico. It’s coming from all over South and Latin America, and it’s coming probably from the Middle East. But we don’t know. Because we have no protection and we have no competence, we don’t know what’s happening. And it’s got to stop and it’s got to stop fast.
Although Univision and NBC have decided to drop the Miss USA pageant on their networks, the live broadcast will air on July 12 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on the Reelz Channel.