Newly crowned Miss USA 2017, Kára McCullough, a government scientist, said that affordable health care for U.S. citizens is a “privilege.” She made this statement during the televised pageant at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas on Sunday.
As part of the competition, the top five finalists are required to answer a question onstage. Each question is different and the topics usually involve current events. This year, the questions were provided by The Skimm, a daily e-mail that breaks down the top headlines. The contestants had 30 seconds to form an opinion and deliver a response in front of a live audience.
McCullough, who represented the District of Columbia, was asked whether affordable health care for all U.S. citizens is a right or a privilege.
“I’m definitely going to say it’s a privilege,” she began.
“As a government employee, I am granted health care and I see first-hand that for one to have health care, you have to have jobs. So, therefore, we need to continue to cultivate this environment that we’re given the opportunity to have health care as well as jobs to all American citizens worldwide.”
— Miss USA (@MissUSA) May 15, 2017
With efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act happening in Washington, it’s obvious that a polarizing question like this would get some divisive responses on both sides. Here are some reactions from Twitter.
— Dani ✌ (@DaniVanHawaiian) May 15, 2017
She said healthcare is a "privilege" & you need a job for it. But ppl with disabilities & diseases who cant work need it the most?? #MissUSA
— smadgirl (@Ashlaayejane) May 15, 2017
Dang I wanted Miss D.C to win but I'm sorry affordable health care is not a privilege. Health care should be a human right! #MissUSA
— Kandacy Adams (@_KandKand) May 15, 2017
So what if people don't agree with Miss USA's comments. As far as I remember, that's definitely a right, not a privilege. #MissUSA
— Lenora Patterson (@DrLPatt) May 15, 2017
No, #MissUSA didn't misunderstand the question. Healthcare is a privilege not a right. Perhaps y'all misunderstood the Constitution
— Antonia Okafor (@antonia_okafor) May 15, 2017
Healthcare according to #MissUSA is a privilege,so is walking across that stage and representing the USA and women.
— Ali (@Alisocialdaily) May 15, 2017
#MissUSA is correct. US healthcare is currently absolutely a privilege. It still SHOULD be a right.
— Emmerbetic (@Emmerbetic) May 15, 2017
The 25-year-old works at the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission. She graduated from South Carolina State University with a degree in chemistry with a concentration in radiochemistry, according to her bio.
Miss USA’s parent company, The Miss Universe Organization, was sold to WME/IMG by Donald Trump in 2015.
Julia La Roche is a finance reporter at Yahoo Finance.