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July 12, 2007

I Could Understand If She Were Miss Amish…



Amy Polumbo, Miss New Jersey, was reportedly being blackmailed over these photos, but decided instead to release them herself — partly because people were circulating far more explicit doctored photos purporting to be the blackmail shots. The directors of the Miss America Pageant are expected to decide today whether these photos violate the pageant’s morals clause.

The fact that this is even an issue either says a lot about how puritanical the United States still is, or how out of touch with reality the Miss America Pageant is.

Those Vanessa Williams photos that turned up some years back… okay, I can see how the Pageant had a case there. But these??

This one (click the thumbnail for a larger version)


is the only one of the lot that might legitimately bother her parents (though remember, she is 22 years old). You have to wonder whether the pageant would have even considered the matter if not for the publicity generated by the blackmail attempt.

These photos had originally been, by the way, posted on a web site that was supposed to be accessible to friends only. Just one more lesson that nothing online is private.

Update: Polumbo will remain Miss New Jersey after all.

Probably the days’s best headline comes from the Philadelphia Weekly: “Miss NJ Releases Photos; World Bored”



  1. “Miss NJ Releases Photos; World Bored”

    That is the best headline EVER.

    Comment by furrykef — July 13, 2007 @ 1:10 pm

  2. As a Jersey resident, I can attest that this story was huge this week. The speculation on what the pictures showed ranged from the outlandish to the down-right depraved. Some pundits even postulated the pictures themselves weren’t bad, it was the captions associated with the pictures that were awful (obliquely hinting that she was a racist or a jerk).

    This is the first time I’ve seen these and now I see that the media completely blew this one out of proportion and in the end, everyone looks stupid. Awesome headline. N_G

    Comment by Nutty_gnome — July 13, 2007 @ 1:46 pm

  3. She’s TWENTY-TWO YEARS OLD! If her parents are bothered by that, that’s their tough, um…. well, let’s say that my parents wouldn’t have been bothered by this when I was 22. Had I been 12 they might have smacked that guy, but 22? That’s a grown adult woman!

    Comment by Charlene — July 13, 2007 @ 8:40 pm

  4. It’s a bit ridiculous to blame this on the “puritanical” United States when it is simply the media being the media. The story had a familiar structure, and the media simply went with it before they knew what the payoff would be. As you report, when the pictures themselves were seen, everybody shrugged. On the other hand, if the payoff had been, say, some sort of orgy scene with half the cast in white hoods and the rest in blackface, would you have the same sneering reaction?

    Comment by solarrhino — July 14, 2007 @ 12:36 pm

  5. What kind of twisted logic brought the alleged blackmailer to try and get anything out of Ms. Palumbo, anyway?

    Comment by rationalpsychic — July 15, 2007 @ 12:02 am

  6. I’m sure the road to Miss America costs each family a good chunk of money, so the blackmailer figured there’s be a payoff for him a well.

    Assuming there isn’t something very fishy about the whole story…

    Comment by Cidu Bill — July 15, 2007 @ 12:06 am

  7. Have I just become too cynical or does this not seem to have been way too much in Ms NJ’s best interests. How many of us had any idea who she was before any of this. Hmmmmm.

    Comment by Lola — July 16, 2007 @ 12:19 pm

  8. Lola, I’m completely with you on this: That’s why I always refer to her as having been “reportedly blackmailed.”

    Of course I’m just naturally suspicious, but the principle of cui bono — who benefits — is usually a good one.

    Comment by Cidu Bill — July 16, 2007 @ 1:23 pm

  9. The blackmailer is a punk, a sissy, a weesle, and a jerk. My goodness, he does not have any capacity in his mind for honest work for pay; such as sports, writing, manufacturing, lawn work, construction, music, minimum wage jobs, clean gutters, rake leaves, drive a taxi, be a door greeter, anything. All he could go to bed, sleep, and wake up and think of is to say to himself was, “I am going to find some pictures and blackmail Miss NJ” give me break. This dude needs to stop breathing and let Nature give the air to another life form.

    Comment by William — October 30, 2007 @ 10:43 pm

  10. ide do her

    Comment by Balls — January 3, 2008 @ 2:23 am

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