Last updated on June 9th, 2023 at 07:57 am
Monroe Lace, a transgender individual who identifies as a woman, is set to compete in the 2023 Miss California Pageant, following his victory in the Miss San Francisco competition earlier this year. Lace became the first transgender individual to win the title in the 99-year history of the contest.
In his current role, Lace spends most of his days visiting elementary schools. A local CBS affiliate showcased a video where Lace was captured reading a children’s book titled “Sparkle Boy,” a story about a young boy who enjoys wearing women’s clothes, to a 4th-grade class at Tenderloin Community School.
Lace is not the first transgender individual to participate in such competitions. In 2021, Kataluna Enriquez, another transgender woman, represented Nevada in the Miss USA pageant. Lace aspires to be the second transgender individual to compete at the national level, following another transgender participant who was crowned Miss Greater Derry and later competed in the Miss New Hampshire competition.
The inclusion of transgender individuals in women’s competitions has stirred controversy and has become a significant cultural and political issue. Prominent personalities like Nikki Haley, a GOP presidential hopeful, has termed it “the women’s issue of our time”. Moreover, many female athletes like Riley Gaines and Paula Scanlon, and even ESPN commentator Samantha Ponder, have voiced their concerns over transgender “women” (biological men) participating in women’s sports. Notably, last year a federal court ruled that Miss USA, a separate organization from Miss America, could retain its “natural born female” policy under the First Amendment’s Free Speech clause.