Miss America Crowning Marred by Racist Slurs

By Colin Bertram
|  Monday, Sep 16, 2013  |  Updated 4:13 PM EDT
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    Moments after 24-year-old Nina Davuluri was crowned Miss America on Sunday night, her detractors rushed to post their views of the win on Twitter.

    The first Indian American to hold the title, Davuluri's victory was met with vitriol rather than adulation when the social media platform was inundated with displays of racial intolerance and ignorance.

    Remarks concerning "this Arab" and numerous 7-11 convenience store references flooded in. Some comments went as far as linking Davuluri to terrorism, while others stated Miss America should be more "American."

    "I am literally soo mad right now a ARAB won. #MissAmerica," wrote DallasRobinson8, who followed that Sunday tweet with, "Only reason she won is bc her people said they would lower gas prices," on Monday morning.

    Other users chose to attack Davuluri for being Muslim, despite the fact that she is the daughter of Hindu immigrants.

    Fox News commentator Todd Starnes - an outspoken supporter of competitor Miss Kansas - also disagreed with the judges' decision, tweeting, "Miss Politically Correct America" and "The liberal Miss America judges won't say this - but Miss Kansas lost because she actually represented American values."

    "I was the first Indian Miss New York, and I'm so proud to be the first Indian Miss America," Davuluri said after she was awarded the title. The native of Syracuse, N.Y. wants to be a doctor, and is applying to medical school, with the help of a $50,000 scholarship she won as part of the pageant title.

    Whether her detractors knew, or even cared, is now beside the point, but Davuluri's platform for the competition was "Celebrating Diversity Through Cultural Competency." For the talent portion she performed classic Indian dances fused with Bollywood moves.

    Sunday night's pageant featured five Asian American contestants, more than any in Miss America history.

    Davuluri's supporters also took to Twitter in an attempt to balance the verbiage:

    For her part, Davuluri graciously dismissed the haters: “I have to rise above that,” she said. “I always viewed myself as first and foremost American.” Monday morning she continued to take the high road, tweeting:
     

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