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Forget The Stupid Answers: These Are The 5 Worst Pageant Questions Ever Asked

Last night, the Internet decided to make fun of Miss Utah for stumbling through the Q&A section of the Miss USA contest. Because, y’know, everyone on the Internet is so smart, naturally. Whether it’s Miss Universe, Miss America, or Miss Grand Rapids Michigan Dairy Queen Parking Lot Attendant, we like to pretend that winning pageants requires more than great boobs in a bikini. To wit, the question and answer portion, where hopeful contestants opine on the problems of our day. But the only thing dumber than the answers these women are expected to give are the questions themselves, which are so broad that an expert speaker would probably be just as bad…especially in the 30 seconds to a minute these contestants are given. The worst questioners combine a trite anecdote (“40 percent of Americans say they love cheese”), add a socially relevant spin (“But only 20 percent of those people are transgender”), and then put the onus on a teenager to provide a solution to a manufactured sociological dilemma (“HOW WOULD YOU SOLVE THIS PROBLEM?”). So let’s not blame the contestants for what look like dumb answers – let’s blame the faux celebrities brought on to ask the questions, as well as the parasitic lampreys that produce the shows and put women in impossibly awkward scenarios…but let’s also look back at some of the worst Q&As ever! 

NeNe Leakes, who is a professional TV housewife, asked Marissa Powell, who was in high school a few years ago, her opinion on the gender wage gap in America. This is like a Gobot asking a Ninja Turtle what he thinks about finding water on Europa, only considerably less awesome than that would sound.

“So, hopeful Miss Universe, what’s one law you would make and why? And since this is ‘Miss Universe,’ we guess that law would apply to…the whole universe? Whatever. Just talk about surfing or something.”

Mariel Hemingway, the granddaughter of Ernest Hemingway, asked the 25-year old Miss Texas to give advice to women married to cheating politicians. This is like the granddaughter of an extremely successful tyrannosaurus rex asking a very attractive otter to give advice to a heart broken emu married to a politically powerful platypus. And, shockingly, she gave a pretty cogent answer!

Probably the most controversial pageant answer ever, Carry Prejean became a lightning rod for gay marriage rights when a guy who became rich and famous for drawing jizz on pictures of celebrities decided to turn a beauty contest into a political soap box.

A classic. A truly dumb question: “Why can’t 1/5 of Americans point out the US on a map?” Uh, because they lack the necessary digits to physically point? Is this Miss Teen USA or Miss Teen Chief Cartographer? Was the answer terrible? Sure. But a question that inane only invites an equally stupid response. Check out Caite Upton's Maxim gallery.

Check out Alyssa Campanella and Katherine Webb