Trans Military Wife, Miss Maryland USA Has Brutal Comeback for Critics

The most recent Miss Maryland, Cambodian American immigrant Bailey Anne Kennedy receives major anti-trans backlash after being crowned. 

The New Miss Maryland USA

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Bailey Anne Kennedy broke records this year as an immigrant transgender woman and military wife winning the coveted Miss Maryland USA. 

A Historic Win

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After immigrating from Cambodia to the United States at age 11, Kennedy found a lot of inspiration in the world of beauty pageants. 

Breaking Barriers

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When Miss USA lessened their restrictions for contestants in 2023, they also allowed women older than 28 and married women to join the competition. 

Rising to the Occasion

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Bailey Anne Kennedy rose to the occasion with grace, and won Maryland’s state title earlier last week. 

Celebrating Her Victory

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After her victory, Kennedy went to the Pride Parade in Washington D.C. to celebrate with the queer community. 

Facing Backlash

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Not everyone has been supportive of Kennedy’s win, and the anti-trans community immediately started to target Kennedy online and on her social media pages. 

Online Criticism 

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Some people online criticized Kennedy as well as the entire Miss USA organization for allowing a transgender woman to compete against and beat cisgender women who truly “deserve it”. 

The Underdog

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Kennedy has not shied away from her achievement, and clapped back saying, “Sometimes the underdog does win in the end”. 

Kennedy’s Response

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Kennedy also posted, “Not everyone has to agree with the spaces that you occupy, and it doesn’t mean that you aren’t worthy of these opportunities”. 

Advocating for Future Generations

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Continuing, “The work that I will do for the remainder of my life is to make sure that children who feel like me will never have to worry about the consequences of being who they are by simply being myself and being a positive contribution to society”. 

Competition Structure

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The Miss USA competition for Miss Maryland includes a swimwear portion, evening gown portion, and interview segment. 

Support From the Miss Maryland USA Team

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Miss Maryland USA was also quick to defend their winner, saying, “Every person has the right to live authentically and pursue every opportunity, and we believe Bailey Anne embodies these values. … We see Bailey’s win as a win for everyone who dreamed the impossible dream”. 

A Proud Military Wife

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Kennedy is married to an active duty Marine, and was prepared to sacrifice her own future for her husband and for her country once she married him. 

Committed to her Country

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Kennedy said, “I accepted the fact that his commitment to our country would always come first and any career aspirations of mine would be second”. 

A New Opportunity

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When Miss USA loosened their restrictions in 2023, Kennedy saw it as a “sign” that this was the time to develop a platform to support other transgender women and military families. 

Proud Immigrant Roots

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Proud of her Cambodian roots, Kennedy has shared her struggles with learning English while assimilating to a completely new culture. 

An Emotional Victory

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After her win, Kennedy posted, “I kept getting so emotional all day because I knew it was bigger than me. I knew that it only took 67 years for married women to compete freely”. 

Reflecting Back

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Kennedy continued, “Let alone to have an immigrant who happened to be bullied all of life for her accent and her different ways of doing things”. 

Fighting Transphobia Together

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Many people have banded together to support the newly crowned pageant queen, and we can only hope that they remain loud enough to overcome the transphobia Kennedy is facing online. 

The post Trans Military Wife, Miss Maryland USA Has Brutal Comeback for Critics first appeared on Pulse of Pride.

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / Jade ThaiCatwalk. The images used may not be actual persons named, the images represent the story not the individual.