updated 17 Jul 2013, 13:02
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Wed, Jul 10, 2013
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Facing fire
by Catherine Robert

The highlight of the Miss Universe Singapore 2013 show was the Q&A segment, which touched on sensitive topics and thus made it one of the toughest and most challenging in the local pageant's history.

Controversial issues like transgendered contestants, racism and government policies were thrown at the Top 8 girls, who surprisingly managed to acquit themselves rather well.

Here are some sample exchanges...

Q: "With Miss Universe Singapore 2013 being slammed for having only Chinese finalists, do you feel that it would have been politically correct to include at least one non-Chinese?"

Cordelia Low: "I do not think it's politically incorrect, because just last year, the first and second runner-up were non- Chinese so why is it that we must have someone who doesn't meet the standard but included just to make it politically correct?

"I don't think so at all."

Q: "Miss Universe is now open to transgendered people. Why do you think there were no applicants this year in Singapore?"

Rebecca Lee: "I think for one, there aren't many transgendered people in Singapore. "And I think that Singapore, being an Asian country, we have steep and traditional values and this contrasts with Canada (where transgendered contestant successfully forced franchise owner Donald Trump to end its ban on such contestants), where (they are) a lot more liberal and they are great activists of individual rights, so they tend to have a better support group.

And this is missing in Singapore..."

Q: "Do you think that our Government's plan to increase the population to 7 a good decision?"

Cheryl Chan: "It's a 50-50 for me because it would help the economy grow.

"However, the main issue in Singapore is actually the ageing population.

"We should try to target the ageing population first before we move on to increasing the population because we are just delaying the process. So in other words, if we dealt with having better health-care services or even cheaper health-care services for everyone, then that will definitely improve things."


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