Some naysayers took to Twitter, on Sunday night, after Nina Davuluri was crowned Miss America 2014 and said that they couldn’t believe an “Arab” won the coveted beauty queen title. The major problem here, other than the blatant racism, is people who are of Indian descent, like the 24-year-old stunner, are considered Asian and not of Arab descent.
And, it's not just the Twitterverse that has a problem distinguishing the identity of people who are of Indian descent.
The New York Daily News reported, on Friday, that New York Police Department Commissioner Ray Kelly had to issue a “memo” to police officers after the Quality Assurance Division, which ensures crime complaints are filed properly, noticed that NYPD officers were incorrectly identifying Indian crime suspects or victims.
The “discrepancy” regarding “incorrect racial identification” wasn’t frequent, but sometimes a person was labeled as Asian and then as American Indian in a different report.
“The memo might give police officers the chance to understand the difference between American Indians and Asian Indians,” Rinku Sen, executive director of the Applied Research Center, told the New York Daily News.
On Sunday night a bunch of negative tweets began to pour in after Davuluri was announced as the winner, and worse, some were calling her “Arab.” The Syracuse resident was the first woman of Indian descent to win the title and the second consecutive Miss New York to take home the honor after Mallory Hagan won last year.
"I was the first Indian Miss New York and I'm so proud to be the first Indian Miss America," Davuluri said, according to NJ.com. She has yet to address the fact that some Americans are seeing her Indian background as a negative.
Check out some of the unsettling, disturbing tweets about Davuluri below:
Are you serious??!!! The Arab wins??!!! This is miss AMERICA!!! Not miss Arabia!!! Miss Kansas is in the army and is a country girl!!! C'mon
— Cade Minnick (@Cademinnick413) September 16, 2013
You have got to be kidding me... We have a black president, now Miss America is an ARAB. Maybe this world is really coming to an end
— Jimmy Slimmy (@PolishPoundCake) September 16, 2013
I thought this was Miss America, not Miss Arab.
— Anthis (@Anthis12) September 16, 2013
And the Arab wins Miss America. Classic.
— POOKIE. (@Granvil_Colt) September 16, 2013
Some, however, couldn't believe the ignorance circulating on the social media site:
What worries me about the Miss America is not that people are being racist (that's expected), but that they think Arab&Indian is the same.
— Martha Mikhail (@martha_mikhail) September 16, 2013
People are mad cause Miss America was crowned by an Indian Woman. Calling her an Arab and terrorist. Smh. Learn your geography please...
— Lone Wolf (@topxshef) September 16, 2013
— Lynn Verghese (@lynnverghese94) September 16, 2013