Miss Teen USA Gets to Keep Crown Despite Racist Tweets
Karlie Hay is already embroiled in controversy despite having been crowned just this weekend.
The newly crowned Miss Teen USA is already embroiled in controversy thanks to several racist tweets that came to light in the hours after Saturday's pageant.
Screenshots of four Twitter posts that the white 18-year-old wrote in 2013 and 2014 appear to show Karlie Hay use the n-word.
While the backlash has been swift, the Texan will keep her crown.
Read: Florida Beauty Queen Loses Crown as It's Revealed She Had Face Professionally Done
Hay used the same platform that got her into trouble to give her apology on Sunday.
"Several years ago, I had many personal struggles and found myself in a place that is not representative of who I am as a person," she tweeted. "I admit that I have used language publicly in the past which I am not proud of and that there is no excuse for.
"Through hard work, education and thanks in large part to the sisterhood that I have come to know through pageants, I am proud to say that I am today a better person. I am honored to hold this title and I will use this platform to promote the values of the Miss Universe Organization, and my own, that recognize the confidence, beauty and perseverance of all women."
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The Miss Universe Organization, which oversees the Miss Teen USA competition, referenced Hay's apology in their statement on the controversy.
"As Karlie stated, she was in a different place in her life and made a serious mistake she regrets and for which she sincerely apologizes," the statement read. "The language Karlie Hay used is unacceptable at any age and in no way reflects the values of the Miss Universe Organization."
Despite widespread condemnation on social media, the organization said it is "committed to supporting her continued growth."
In a separate controversy, the annual pageant was criticized for this year's decidedly similar-looking top five finalists.
"Wow how can we choose from such a diverse bunch," model and TV personality Chrissy Teigen posted after the top five were revealed.
The finalists – Miss South Carolina, Miss Alabama, Miss Texas, Miss Nevada and Miss North Carolina – are all blonde white teens.
Watch: Ex-Miss Pennsylvania Stands by Claim Trump's Pageant Was Rigged: 'He Doesn't Scare Me'
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