Miss America 2004 Ericka Dunlap: I was asked to move seats because I'm black'

By Gavriella Tjandra,

Miss America 2004 Ericka Dunlap was angry, waiting for an apology from her own beauty pageant organization, because of, according to her, a racist remark the show’s producer said to her.

According to TMZ, Dunlap said that she was forced to move from a prime seat during the competition last weekend, because she was black.

The 31-year-old said, “I was sitting there on the aisle, and during the first commercial break during top 15 announcement, a producer came up to me and said, ‘Get out of that seat, I need the seat. I don’t give a **** who you are. Get out the ****ing seat.”

“I was spoken to as if I didn’t matter. If I were any other Miss America, I would have never been spoken to like that. But I’m the only black one who comes back."

Dunlap at first refused to move because of the producer’s tone, but an assistant producer came over later to help the producer remove her from her seat, physically.

“I was mortified,” she said.

She does not plan to sue, she is only awaiting the organization’s apology. A representative for the Miss America organization slammed her statement, saying that the story was nonsense.

“During the night of the telecast, Ericka was unhappy with her seat, and she chose to move to a camera-blocked seat that was reserved for the parents of our contestants."

“At the top of the show, the stage manager asked her to move to seat the contestant’s parents, and she refused to move. She subsequently was offered a better seat, however, she refused it. It was strictly a television production issue."

Ericka Dunlap was crowned Miss Florida in 2003, and became the first African-American to win the title.



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