Miss America Pageant Director Resigns, Protesting Contestants' Ability To Speak Freely

Jillian Bandes
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Posted: May 13, 2009 7:31 PM
Miss America pageant director Shannon Moakler has resigned, according to USMagazine.com. Moakler had voiced her support for gay marriage shortly after Miss California, aka Carrie Prejean, had come out against it during the Miss America competition.

The news comes one day after Donald Trump told Prejean that she could keep her crown, after critics publicized photos of her that might have invalidated her ability to compete. Moakler had launched her own campaign in support of gay marriage after the April 19 competition, speaking out against California's Proposition 8, which would ban gay marriage in the state.
"Since the press conference yesterday, I had a chance to think about what has taken place, and I feel that at this time it is in my best interest to resign from the Miss California USA organization," Moakler tells Us.

"I cannot with a clear conscious move forward supporting and promoting the Miss Universe Organization when I no longer believe in it, or the contracts I signed committing myself as a youth," she continues. "I want to be a role model for young women with high hopes of pageantry, but now feel it more important to be a role model for my children. I am sorry and hope I have not let any young supporters down but wish them the best of luck in fulfilling their dreams."