In this image released by ABC

Beauty contestant unprepared for spotlight

Miss Universe contestant Jenna Talackova has a boyfriend and hopes to have two kids some day, but didn’t initially tell him she was born male, the transgendered Canadian beauty queen said Monday.

NEW YORK — Miss Universe contestant Jenna Talackova has a boyfriend and hopes to have two kids some day, but didn’t initially tell him she was born male, the transgendered Canadian beauty queen said Monday.

In an interview with ABC Television’s Good Morning America, Talackova said she and her boyfriend of 2 1/2 years needed to get to know each other as friends before she told him about her sex change procedure.

“Of course I had to let him know,” Talackova said.

“He was very supportive, very accepting. He saw me for who I was.”

Talackova was asked whether she wants to have children. She replied, without elaborating, “Yes, I want to have two children.”

Talackova, 23, had already made the Miss Universe Canada final before pageant organizers unleashed a wave of global media attention last month by disqualifying her on the basis she had to be a “naturally-born” female.

Pageant owner Donald Trump finally stepped in and overruled that decision, reinstating her ahead of the May 19 Miss Universe Canada contest.

Talackova, who had not hidden her status, found herself thrust into an unexpected and intense publicity glare.

“You’re never trained for that,” she said nervously, as her lawyer looked on. “But I’m handling it quite well.”

Despite the cut-throat nature of the pageant, Talackova said fellow contestants have been supportive and made it clear they wanted her to compete.

She said as soon as word of her disqualification spread, they let her know they believed in equality.

“We’ve been training together for eight months so we’ve become close,” she said of the other contestants.

The tall, slim, blond from Vancouver, who underwent sex-change surgery at age 19, says she has known from the earliest age that she was born the wrong gender. Growing up that way “builds character,” she said.

People often don’t understand what she has gone through, Talackova said, adding when they do get to know her or become her friend, “they fall in love.”

At the same time, she said, she never wanted to be an advocate, but said people say they find her inspiring, and that has made it worth it.

High-profile American lawyer Gloria Allred said Trump did the right thing by allowing Talackova to stay in the competition, because the disqualification was simply wrong, something that should be recognized globally.

“That’s a blatantly discriminatory rule,” Allred said. “We wanted Donald Trump to step up and be a leader in this battle for equality (and) we’re very happy that he has conceded that rule does violate the laws of Canada and of the United States.”

Trump appeared to agree with that position last week, saying it wouldn’t be fair to allow the transgendered to compete only in certain countries.

Regardless of the outcome of the contest, Allred said her client has already won a major victory by her display of courage.

“We want everyone to be judged not on how they were at birth, but for the beautiful young women they are today,” Allred said. “Judge them on their merits.”

Just Posted

Former Humboldt Broncos player who survived bus crash hopes for spot on team

RED DEER, Alta. — A former Humboldt Broncos player whose back was… Continue reading

Man and dog dead after early morning house fire in Lethbridge

LETHBRIDGE, Alta. — Officials say a man and a dog are dead… Continue reading

Ottawa fights planned class action against RCMP for bullying, intimidation

OTTAWA — The federal government is fighting a proposed class-action lawsuit against… Continue reading

May says Greens will work with any party that has a serious plan for the climate

OTTAWA — With three months until Canadians vote in the next federal… Continue reading

Joe Hittel rappels down 12 storey building in Red Deer – again

Eighty four year old Red Deerian was not afraid to rappel down… Continue reading

Fashion Fridays: 5 casual summer dress styles

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Hotels face battle over whether to help US house migrants

DETROIT — There’s a new target in the clash over immigration: hotels.… Continue reading

Thousands visit Illinois governor mansion after renovations

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Thousands of people have visited the Illinois governor’s mansion… Continue reading

Canadian high school science courses behind on climate change, says UBC study

VANCOUVER — High school students in Canada may not be getting the… Continue reading

‘Us and them’: influence of Quebec anglos on decline with new Coalition government

MONTREAL — Last March, Quebec Premier Francois Legault made a mocking remark… Continue reading

Japanese Canadians call on B.C. to go beyond mere apology for historic racism

VANCOUVER — Japanese Canadians across the country are meeting to discuss how… Continue reading

Off Canada’s East Coast, a hunt to detect ‘beautiful’ great white sharks

HALIFAX — The great white sharks move torpedo-like through East Coast waters,… Continue reading

ESPN reasserts political talk policy after attack on Trump

NEW YORK — ESPN is reminding employees of the network’s policy to… Continue reading

Tentative agreement averts strike by Quebec provincial park employees

MONTREAL — A full-blown strike by employees at Quebec provincial parks that… Continue reading

Most Read