The news site of Miami Palmetto Senior High School

Why is there no Miss Panther?

February 10, 2016

Every year, Palmetto hosts the annual Mr. Panther mock beauty pageant for men and every year, the question arises: if there is a Mr. Panther, why is there no Miss Panther?

Some speculate that girls do not have their own version of Mr. Panther because of common stereotypes, e.g. being catty, competitive and mean to one another; however, reason for the lack of this event goes beyond these misconceptions.

Generally speaking, girls are far more likely to be viewed as sexual objects, almost inhuman and rather a pretty face to look at, and would suffer significant rebuttal just for being on stage in a glamorized manner. Women are held to much higher beauty standards than men and if they do not fit the extensive beauty expectations women are expected to fulfil, they will most likely receive verbally abusive and degrading statements about their bodies from audience members long after the show (not to mention inappropriate cat calling by immature audience members during the show). They are expected to look a certain way, have a certain fit body shape, tan and have perfectly straight white teeth in order to receive recognition and praise for their bodies.

Aside from the many expectations compared to the few men must keep up with, women in a Miss Panther show at Palmetto would be objectified in a much more harmful way to their mental health. Some argue that Mr. Panther objectifies men as well, however, the show’s lighthearted fashion and fun tone that allows for boys to willingly embarrass themselves differs vastly than it would for a woman. Girls who participate in beauty pageants often enter the circuit at a very young age due to their parents, often without a choice, instilling a more competitive atmosphere.

Throughout the entirety of Mr. Panther, the boys are almost always shirtless and/or wearing very tight fitting and short bottoms, sometimes even tiny speedos in the bathing suit portion of the show. If a female student even attempted to wear a bikini on stage for a minute, let alone two hours, she would probably be slut shamed and face consequences for indecent exposure unlike men. This parallels the idea of boys not being punished for wearing shorts to school compared to the many girls who are.

If all students were inherently respectful, perhaps a Miss Panther would work; however, since that is clearly not the case in any aspect of humanity, having a Miss Panther would only breed hatred and an unhealthy environment for students at Palmetto and therefore is rightfully disallowed.

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