Miss Puerto Rico 2015 Destiny Velez, who competed for the Miss America 2016 title in September 2016, has been suspended after she posted anti-Muslim comments on Twitter. The Miss Puerto Rico Organization has announced that her suspension is indefinite.
The 20-year-old beauty pageant title holder responded to film maker Michael Moore's tweet on the launch of his "We are all Muslim" campaign over the weekend. Though her Twitter page has since been taken down, CNN has revealed her original anti-Muslim messages.
Valez wrote: "Muslims use our constitution to terrorize USA & plant gas stations." Miss Puerto Rico, who was one of the finalists of Miss America scholarship, said: "There's NO comparison between Jews, Christians & Muslims. Jews nor Christians have terrorizing agendas in their sacred books." And finally she posted: "all what Muslims have done is provided oil & terrorize this country & many others!!!!!!."
— Michael Moore (@MMFlint) December 18, 2015
The Miss Puerto Rico Organization and Miss America Organization have both distanced from Valez following her racist remarks. The former issued an official statement on Facebook announcing her suspension.
"In regards to Miss Puerto Rico, Destiny Velez's, recent actions and conduct; the Miss Puerto Rico Organization feels that her words do not represent the integrity and esteem of our program, nor that of our board members, our sponsors and partners, or the National Organization," the statement read.
"Miss Velez's actions were in contradiction to the organization, and therefore as a consequence of her actions, she has been suspended indefinitely. The Miss Puerto Rico Organization will not tolerate any actions or behaviour contrary to the Miss Puerto Rico Organization."
"The Miss Puerto Rico Organization apologizes for the distress that Miss Velez's actions and conduct may have caused."
The statement also included an apology from Valez. She wrote: "I apologize to the people I have offended with my words. I stand up against bullying. The last thing I wanted to do was to bully anyone. Again, I apologize to anyone who felt offended with my words."
Miss America Organization backed the suspension saying it "does not in any way condone or support the recent statements of Miss Puerto Rico." The organisation also said that it was actively working with the Miss Puerto Organization to resolve the issue.
— Michael Moore (@MMFlint) December 21, 2015