An open letter to Miss California, Carrie Prejean:
First off, congratulations on keeping your title as Miss California, despite all the brouhaha over allegedly "racy" pictures and your, uh, surgical enhancements. I've seen those pictures online, and they seem pretty vanilla, at least compared to some of the other things I've seen online, but hey, let's not go into that.
As for the other thing: Hey, it's California, right? I thought implants were more or less mandatory out there. And it's a good thing to have Donald Trump behind you. Just don't let him get too close behind you, if you know what I mean. The guy's reportedly a major hound.
Frankly, Carrie, I've been pretty uninterested in the whole kerfluffle surrounding your not getting the Miss USA title. And since a girl from my home state of North Carolina took home the crown, I'm pleased, to the extent that I care at all, which is not much.
But I do feel like I need to address one thing you said in public. Apparently you're unhappy with what happened when you answered a question about gay marriage by stating you felt marriage was only between a man and a woman. Your words were, I believe:
"On April 19th, on that stage, I exercised my freedom of speech and I
was punished for doing so. This should not happen in America. It
undermines the constitutional rights which my grandfather fought for."
When I heard that, I felt I really needed to speak up. Because, see, I'm a major, major fan of the First Amendment. I'm talking pre-teen-girl-crush-on-the Jonas-brothers level of fan. I don't actually write "Dusty + First Amendment" inside a great big heart on the cover of my notebooks, at least not anymore, but still. Big, big fan. So when I heard your complaint that your First Amendment rights were being violated, I felt I had to speak up.
Carrie, you're very pretty, and you seem like a sweet girl. But here's the thing, darlin', and I say this with all due respect: You're ignorant. Now, I could be a jerk and call you dumb, but I'll give you the benefit of the doubt, because I'm awesome like that. I'll attribute this boneheaded statement to your never having been taught right, rather than any kind of mental defect.
I'll just assume that while you were learning little beauty pageant tricks like putting Vaseline on your teeth to make your smile wider that no one ever taught you what the First Amendment really says. But unlike stupidity, ignorance can be cured. And Carrie, I'm here to help. Because I'm a giver. I give. It's what I do.
Now, on to the First Amendment. It says: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances."
Get that first part? Congress shall make no law. Now, if Congress was trying to pass a law to shut you up, I'd be hollering as loud as anyone. But they're not.
You got criticized. People said nasty things about you. One of them was the contest judge to whom you addressed your comments, a bitchy Internet gossip columnist who's about as far out of the closet as you can get.
And you didn't win. But imagine if you'd been in Alabama, and the judge was the head of the local Baptist church. And imagine if you'd made the comment that you were all for gay marriage. You probably wouldn't have won that one either, and the same people who are shedding tears for you now would be applauding the judge who voted against you.
But none of that has anything to do with the First Amendment. The First Amendment doesn't mean no one can disagree with you, or even that they have to be sweet to you when they do. It doesn't mean you can insult a contest judge and still win.
So, and again, I say this with respect: Come down off the cross, honey. We need the wood.