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Biracial winner "not black enough" for black beauty pageant

CONTROVERSY: Rachael Malonson

THE WINNER of the Miss Black University of Texas has responded to comments on social media, who've claimed she's "not black enough" to win the title.

Rachael Malonson, who is biracial, was crowned on Sunday at the event which was hosted by Kappa Alpha Psi – a predominantly black fraternity.

Following her win, the 22-year-old told Fox News: “It was definitely a huge honour to win. As a biracial woman, I didn’t even think I was able to place.”

In a Facebook post after her win, Rachael said she was at first reluctant to take part in the pageant because of her mixed race. “I challenged myself by vulnerably expressing obstacles I face as a biracial woman and was not going to leave the stage without letting others know that my blessings and strength are in Christ alone,” she said.

However, her new title didn't sit well with many, who commented that she was the "Whitest-looking" black person picked to win, and alluded to the fact that colourism in favour of a light skin woman may have been at play here.

DIFFERENT OPINIONS: Twitter reactions to Rachael's win

Rachael, whose father is black and whose mother is white, said she was taken off guard by the criticism, particularly since her pageant platform was partially about trying to break down stereotypes and educating people about racial identity.

She said: “I didn’t realise that even after I received the title I would still have to explain myself, that there was still ignorant people out there who are asking me to prove myself. Just because I have straight hair and olive skin tone doesn’t mean I’m not black. I don’t have to look a certain way to be black."

Rachael, who is a senior and a broadcasting and journalism student at the University of Texas, seems to have spun the criticism into a positive, whilst focusing on those who came out and supported her, especially those in the African American community.

“The beautiful thing about this is all the people her [at UT] who have come out and defended me. It shows I have a beautiful support system here.”

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