Yet another beauty queen has lost her crown over PR issues. According to the Associated Press, Miss Turkey 2017 was “stripped of her crown over a social media posting deemed to be insulting the memory of people killed in a failed military coup.”
What we do know is this: Miss Turkey, 18-year-old Itir Esen, lost her crown the day after she won the pageant that bestowed on her the honor of representing Turkey in the Miss World contest, which will be held in China. In a media release, pageant organizers said the punishment was due to an “unacceptable” tweet from back in July.
On July 15, Turkey was holding memorials for victims killed during the 2016 coup attempt. Esen decided it would be a good idea to login to Twitter and post this: “I got my period on the morning of martyr’s day. I’m marking the day by bleeding as a representation of martyrs’ blood.”
Twitter exploded with rage at the bizarre and insensitive comparison between a natural body function over which Esen had little control and the death of countless people. After the explosion of derision aimed at the tweet, Esen tried one of the oldest reflexive defenses. She claimed the tweet was not hers. That flimsy excuse was quickly cast aside by the Miss Turkey organization, which “reached the conclusion that the tweet was posted by Itir Esen.”
Then came the hammer: “It is not possible for the Miss Turkey Organization, whose aim is to promote Turkey worldwide and to contribute to its image, to accept such a posting.”
What some are currently asking is why it took pageant organizers so long to decide this. Since the firestorm after the tweet, they could have simply told Esen she was not qualified to compete. Instead, they let her compete, let her win and then took the crown the very next day. Either this was meant to be punitive, or, perhaps, someone in a position of authority outside the pageant was looking to make a statement.
Whatever the motivation, this is yet one more example of an unnecessary Twitter post damaging an otherwise promising career. Why people keep doing it is a mystery, but it seems like Twitter career suicide will continue. For those who love emoting on Twitter, a bit of advice. Understand that the consequences of your momentary tweet could very well be much more than you anticipate. It’s not just “send it and forget it…” Twitter is forever.