Miss Universe Beauties should not have interpreters. They must be able to speak well in English. Why can’t some not speak English one? That’s how I’ll phrase my question using Singlish tone.

English is the the universal language and most people from anywhere in the world knows little English, at the very least. These beauties are competing to be the Miss Universe, as the title of the contest suggests.

I just don’t understand why some countries won’t choose to send over a candidate who can speak English anyhow. Note that I’m not demeaning them and I don’t mean that they should have no regard to their native tongue.

I just think that in this kind of internationally-known beauty pageant where people from all around the world are watching and gauging the answers given by contestants, they should be playing on the same field by saying answers in English.

I also have a bubble thought in my head which I’d be happy to share: who will know that what the interpreter said was exactly what the contestant just said in her native language. The interpreters can be bias by rephrasing their answers to sound more appealing, not to mention that it buys the contestant some time to think about the question.

But if all contestants are required to speak only the English language, they will have exactly the same time to think and construct their answers. Also, the winner will be interacting and communicating with thousands of people globally, right?

If she can’t speak well with them, will she need an interpreter all the time to guide her through? Hmmm. Don’t you think that it’s better to require Miss Universe contestants to answer in English language in the future?

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40 Responses

  1. Wanderer Juan

    For me, I wouldn’t mind the contestants of that pageant speaking in their own language because if they spoke in a different language other than their own they will have a hard time expressing themselves and the message they want to convey will come out different.

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Winners of beauty pageants especially international ones do visit several countries to help out in community service, right? They are to make a difference in the world for a year in their position. But how can they be able to communicate well with people from other parts of the globe when they can’t speak the universal language? That’s the point I am mainly raising here. 🙂

      Reply
  2. Jerwel Adrian

    I agree, they should be both beauty and brain and not just beauty. That way, whatever the goal of the winner is, she can deliver er message since English is a universal medium for communication today.

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Yeah. The “beauty and brains” prerequisite does not only cover presenting themselves in the contest but in real life where they are more exposed to criticisms and judgements. They must be able to stand proudly and one way to do it is by interacting with the citizens (language can be a barrier if they can’t speak English, the most common one in the world).

      Reply
  3. Franc Ramon

    I have to agree with you as they have additional time to think by using interpreters. It also encourages english as a universal language.

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Interpreters as well should be quick in translating the question because time starts not when they relayed the question but when the judge (original person who asked) did.

      Reply
  4. Jerome Ibuyan

    I agree to your point Kirstin but let’s not forget not all are English-speaking countries. It’s the intention that matters.

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Yes, intention matters and they can express themselves in their native language but I’m more concerned about the reality–they can’t bring with them interpreters wherever they go, can they?

      Reply
  5. jo-ann

    I agree with you, I just can’t imagine some of them win when they can even understand everybody’s language!

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      How can they even communicate when they are bonding together, right? I understand that before the contest proper, the girls live in a house or a resort when their skills and characters are being tested with different activities.

      Reply
  6. Traveling Morion

    I Agree! Ms Universe is not just about beauty its about intelligence and flexibility to be on standard. As English is the world’s major language, they must be required to speak in that language…

    Reply
  7. Pepper Tan

    Yes, I guess they should have a working knowledge of English, if they want to strike it big in the Miss U competition. It helps them better connect with the audience.

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Yup. Miss Universe beauty pageant contestants build their bodies to wow everyone in the swimsuit competition and modeling acts. They practice hard for the stunt they will be showcasing in the talent portion. They choose the right designers who can make wonderful nightgowns. But they should also consider improving their language skills, unless they do not picture themselves to be standing right next to the top contenders for the Q&A.

      Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Well, now somehow the ball game becomes different. It’s just all about beauty and character. To quote Janina Tugonon, “For me being miss universe is not just about knowing how to speak a specific language. I’ts being able to influence and inspire other people, so whatever language you have as long as your heart is deserve and your have a strong mind to show to people, then you can be Miss Universe. Thank you.”

      Reply
  8. papaleng

    Then why worry about the pageant policy when we can too do a similar act. Bring our own interpereter as well. LOL

    Reply
  9. jane

    you’ve said all the point! I’ve been fond of watching this known contest true to think that it’s for international they should think that their contestant is able to communicate in a fair language too. i mean, we filipinos belong to the country which everyone says we’re just nothing compared to them but looks who’s talking right? we are hard working people and everything! Plus we can speak English! hahaha love this post Kirstin!

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Thanks, Jane. I’m just glad that we belong to such a country that despite having its own regional/national language knows and values English to connect to other people.

      Reply
  10. Sky

    Ideally it’s good to have all the candidate speaks English well when joining Ms. Universe pageant. But it will defeat the purpose of such contest since it’s not all about Q&A and speaking fluently in English.

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      The contest is not about speaking fluently in English but I believe that Miss Universe is not even about the competition itself. What’s more important is how the winner of the pageant responds to the needs of the people she is helping after winning.

      Getting the crown home implies a big responsibility and that includes communicating with the society where she is assigned to (for that year). For instance, she has been predestined to go to the Philippines and the woman can’t even speak in English, how can she make an impact while saying all her foreign words to a translator and the translator relates them to actions?

      Reply
  11. Mark Morfe

    I agree. As English is our universal language, I believe that the contestants can express themselves fluently in English. I Thank You. 😀

    Reply
  12. ralph

    in as much as interpreter can make the answers better, still they may not cheat for there are a lot of people watching them also. Yahweh bless.

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Yes, you are right at that angle but since there’s a change in language, the contestant might not be really able to understand the judge’s question. The translator may be more of a help in trying to relaying the message in a way that’s clearer.

      Reply
  13. Alwin

    while i respect that they’re unable to speak English, what I would prefer is that they are able to understand English that way they can respond quickly and won’t require interpreters to throw the question back at them in their native tongue.

    Reply
  14. Tess

    right, most of the candidates speaks and understands English but they still have interpreters because it is additional points, the interpreter can interpret well in English their answers.

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Yeah, interpreters can save a crown and help contestants win the beauty pageant as it’s very critical not to commit the mistake of speaking in a language that you’re not comfortable with to express yourself in this high-profile situation. There’s a high chance of being misinterpreted.

      Reply
  15. Justin

    I have to agree with that.. but at some point, they have to consider countries that are not teaching English as a language.. isn’t it ironic for someone to represent your country yet they are not full blooded citizens of the country just because they can speak in English..??

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Point taken. There are countries who don’t teach English as a language but English is known as a universal language so at least those countries must find some way to begin teaching it to their people.

      Reply
      • Babi

        I guess you’re right with your point that English be used in this pageant as it is “an international competition”. I’m only concerned with how it defeats the purpose of the pageant: showcasing diversity. And by excluding people who do not speak a specific language, diversity is limited. English-speaking countries have so much option for candidates but some that are not, are just hopeless. Not everyone speaks English. I think that this is not yet the time where it is considered the “universal language”. So chill. And your argument about other candidates buying time for their answers? Does it make much of a difference when thousands of people are looking at you and you’re very much anxious?

      • Rochkirstin Santos

        Hi Babi, thanks for your inputs. I appreciate hearing others’ opinion as well and all your points are counted. Showcasing diversity through language is also important. I’m sorry I’ve missed that one out. What’s important is the confidence the candidates have in their answers and how they answer the questions.

  16. dianne

    I was surprised when Steve announced that Miss Columbia was the winner, as she did not speak English. Although very beautiful and did well in all other areas in the contest, her inability to speak English was surprising. Most of the contestants learned English and I think it should be either a requirement, or points off for not speaking the language that will be needed for the job. She could get a job as a “double” for Sofia Vergara!

    Reply
  17. borja

    I think it is important to talk one of the international languages but, if that becomes mandatory ther will be a disventage ont the peagent, in most of LA countries is not common the english learning or speak so there are not many chances to practice it, so the contestants could learn but never will have the same oportunities to perfect it like the other countries ones including the non English speak ones. That turns the contest unfair or limiting to just those who have the resources to learn or travel. In adition it is supossed to be an international event and the standarization will make the lose of its multicultural features

    Reply
  18. proly

    Yet the pre-conception that English is the universal language is a social construct. In that sense, I can even argue that since its Miss Universe, contestants should be able to speak all languages! As said by some of the commenters, not all countries are not english speaking in nature.

    Reply

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