The Instigator
Con (against)
3 Points
The Contender
Pro (for)
0 Points

Making Beauty Pageants Illegal

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Post Voting Period
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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/3/2014 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,181 times Debate No: 43312
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (1)
Votes (1)




Beauty pageants have become a controversial issue. A beauty pageant will be defined as competition determining most beautiful woman: a competition for women in which a panel of judges decides who is the most beautiful of all the candidates. This topic would be making beauty pageants illegal for any citizen 18 and under. It is important to keep in mind there are talent competitions in the beauty pageants as well. Beauty pageants have been criticized for exploiting young girls.
Beauty pageants lead a path to college that the girl originally would not be subject to. While offering a way to help confidence and self worth, beauty pageants can lead to scholarships a girl might of never had the chance to get.

This is the basic, simple plot of the arguments that could take place. My opponents argument will have a brief open statement as well. Thank you.


Beauty pageants objectify women and teenagers, they project an image in to heads that women must look beautiful. Beauty pageants are a major cause of anorexia and bulimia. Plus why should some one get a scholarship just because they are good looking? Looks are natural but brains can be gained by working hard.
Debate Round No. 1


paigeb forfeited this round.


Beauty pageants project the image that girls should be paper thin with perfect skin and hair. This is not what should be put in girls minds. Girls should not be aiming to get a scholarship by winning a beauty pageant but by working hard.
Debate Round No. 2


My apologies- I had family issues I had to attend to.
I am negating the reasons to prohibit beauty pageants for 3 key reasons. Participating in beauty pageants is a right of a parent to decide, and at a young age can give contestants recognition that may lead to future scholarships a contestant may of otherwise not been able to receive. Beauty pageants receive a negative reputation because of the media.

First of all, a parent has the right to parent their kid as long as it is not endangering the child. The federal government has no right to tell parents how to parent their children. This falls under the right to privacy. As long as there is no child endangerment, then this cannot be banned on the basic principles of liberty. A ban would not succeed. Hilary Levey Freedman, a research associate at Harvard Kennedy school, states, "Historically and legally, our system defers to parents to make the right decision for their child. We see the family as a more private entity." Parents make decisions for their children everyday, from what school they attend to what activities they do. From a bad reputation, beauty pageants have been scrutinized, when they are no different from other activities like dance. Beauty pageants are beneficial, leading to scholarships and recognition. [1] This gets contestants prepared for future achievements.

Second, beauty pageants can give contestants recognition and scholarships that may have not been available before, Banning beauty pageants in the early stages will not be beneficial for these children, nor prepare them. There are many opportunities for children that participate in pageants. Despite what my opponent thinks, that it is all about what is on the surface, is in fact, false. In fact, there are a variety of factors that contribute to what beauty pageants are judged for and who gets scholarships. [2] It is really promoting education, specifically to girls.

In addition, beauty pageants are misinterpreted by the public. Producer, Mike Fleiss, states 20- 80 percent of all reality shows are edited to show negativity. [3] Beauty pageants get negative feedback because of the manipulation of media and popular television shows, like the well known 'Toddlers and Tiaras'. He states that these shows are edited in an hour with all negative scenes possible, some even staged. Shows and the media are really misinforming people of what really occurs.

Beauty pageants are beneficial and show be available for any parent to decide if their child is fit to compete or not.



I agree that parents have the right to bring up their child however they see fit. However I do not believe it is their choice whether their child enters a beauty pageant. Entry into pageants should be the child's choice not the parents, however the children are too young to make this decision therefore pageants should not be allowed.
These pageants sexulise young girls. They promote sexual stereotypes which transform girls in to sexual objects. Have you noticed the growing number of young girls wearing extreme amounts of makeup and heavily padded bras. This is because society (pageants) have given the impression that this is how girls should look.
A 2007 report by the American Psychological Association found that the hypersexualization of young girls is strongly connected with eating disorders, low self-esteem, and depression. It also leads to fewer girls pursuing careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
Scholarships should not be awarded because somebody is pretty it should be given because they are hard working. Beauty is natural, you are born with it so why should you get an expensive scholarship because of it. What about the less pretty girls they are given the impression they are worthless and they don't get the opportunity to enter a contest based simply on beauty and sexual appeal.
Beauty pageant give an impression to young girls that beauty is much more important than it actually is. Life is not about looks.
Debate Round No. 3


My opponent does, in fact, agree with parents having the right to bring up their child however they see fit, and continued on to say to the extent that children are too young to make decisions therefore pageants should not be allowed.

I have to disagree. Parents make up countless decisions of their child's life. Dance and cheer leading are very similar to beauty pageants, as dance is a part of beauty pageants. However, dance and cheer leading are not covered by the media. Thus, the media is to blame for the growing controversy over beauty pageants.

Secondly, I do agree the show Toddlers and Tiaras does show does sexualize young girls. However, again, we have to remember my media argument in the previous round. We can not let a small group of children and parents ruin the experience for everyone else. For example, in a talent show, there might be a poor act. That does not ruin the entire show, though. The same is for beauty pageants. In fact, everything in the word. There are people who do poor things, and people who dress their children poorly, but we can not prohibit pageants for everyone. I do not believe that beauty pageants are actually sexualizing girls for adults to judge, and that should be the reason why we prohibit them. Cheer leading has judges. Dance has judges. They put on a show.

Thirdly, I disagree that scholarships are given just on looks. Beauty pageants have been transformed into a sport that judges more than external beauty. They judge talent and even ask the girls questions that they must answer properly. The truth is the world does revolve around looks. As much as we want this to be a under the surface world, what is on the surface is also a thriving business as well. Being a model is a job.

You said that less girls are pursuing careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. You implied this was a bad thing. However, that is a complete personal opinion on the basis of those fields are more important. It is also your opinion that less pretty girls feel worthless. We need to take in consideration if beauty pageants are causing this, or other factors like magazines or television shows, and not necessarily beauty pageants. My opponent is making the assumption that beauty pageants are the underlying cause of eating disorders, which is not true. In fact, without a statistic that it is only from beauty pageants, I can only disregard that argument, which anyway, would be impossibly of getting without other factors. The argument my opponent presented was correlating with beauty pageants, but in no way causation.

In conclusion, beauty pageants can not be blamed on the focus of the media who only reports the worse stories. In fact, one of the only statistics my opponent presented were from a reality TV show, 'Toddlers and Tiaras'. Taking this into great consideration, we need to also look at the reasoning. Modeling is a job. Beauty pageants support scholarships, something a child might of not had the opportunity to get otherwise. My opponent is assuming that without beauty pageants, kids would get more educated and work harder in schools, which is an assumption and not true.

Vote con.


wildpuffin forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by DudeStop 2 years ago
Dammit thought you were Pro...
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by kbub 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Oof, an inopportune forfeit for Pro. It's hard in the last one, because you can't really make it up. Con of course also had a forfeit, but she was able to recover somewhat in the later rounds. Pro, I actually quite agree with your case; however, your arguments were not thoroughly defended. Con was right in saying that you did not demonstrate that the problems you listed were certainly due to pageants. You also did not demonstrate that beauty pagents are primarily about looks (mainly because you forfeited your last round I think). Pro did win that some pagents are sexist, but like Con said many things in our society are sexist. Pro did not show that it is sexist enough to make it illegal. The thing about children's permission was interesting and I think would have made a good argument, but it wasn't well developed; Con mentioned (though Con I think you might have refuted more thoroughly) that parents do have the right to make certain decisions for their children. I vote Con. Thanks!