A Scientist wins Miss USA, Stirs Controversy With Her Answers on Health Care and Feminism

Ria Das
May 16, 2017 12:01 IST
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Kára McCullough -- The New Miss USA

“I don’t want to call myself a feminist,” McCullough echoed in a room full of a crowd who were looking right at her before she was crowned Miss USA 2017 on Sunday.


Very few people knew that Kára McCullough, a 25-year-old model is a scientist who works at the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission. McCullough proved the new saying true – ‘Brainy is the New Sexy’.

McCullough -- Miss D C -- overpowered the other beauties and won the top prize on Sunday night with Miss New Jersey Chhavi Verg taking up the runner-up’s spot while at the third-place was Miss Minnesota, Meridith Gould.

The current Miss USA is a 25-year-old scientist — born in Italy and raised in Virginia Beach — who represented the District of Columbia in this decades-old pageant. However, the feat to earn the top prize did not come without controversies. The fashionista, in fact, made some controversial comments about political issues during the competition.


She was all over social media with her answers to some of the questions. On being asked if she considers herself as a feminist, McCullough said, “Women, we are just as equal as men, especially in the workplace, I don’t want to call myself a feminist.”

Twitterati’s reaction remained same to her response to another question: “What do you consider feminism to be, and do you consider yourself a feminist?”

“So as a woman scientist in the government, I’d like to lately transpose the word feminism to equalism,” McCullough said as members of the audience cheered. “I don’t really want to consider myself — try not to consider myself like this die-hard, you know, like, ‘Oh, I don’t really care about men.’ But one thing I’m gonna say, though, is women, we are just as equal as men when it comes to opportunity in the workplace.”


When asked if healthcare is  a privilege she responded, “I’m definitely going to say it’s a privilege. As a government employee, I’m granted health care and I see firsthand that for one to have health care, you need to have jobs.”

A graduate in chemistry from South Carolina State University, McCullough said after the contest: “I believe we’ve come a long way and there is more work to be done. I think domestically we are making progress and I do believe that we will become equal one day.”


She wants to inspire children to pursue careers in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

"I love science," McCullough said post the event. "I look at this as a great opportunity to ... get to experience the worldwide culture, as well as just having the opportunity to so many children, hopefully in the math and sciences."

We wish McCullough good luck in all her future endeavours!

READ: Teen Wins Miss Minnesota Pageant In Hijab, Burkini

Also Read: Pak Gangrape Survivor Walks The Ramp

Feature Image Credit: New York Post

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#Feminism #beauty pageants ##MissUSA #Kara McCullough #Miss USA title 2017 #Scientist