When Deshauna Barber was crowned Miss USA, we marveled at her beauty, intelligence, and poise as member of the U.S. Army Reserve.
But not everybody shared the same sentiment about her win. Barber sat down with Huff Post Live to discuss how she became the subject or racist comments from online trolls.
Regarding some of the troubling comments made about her, Barber said:
“I just knew that everyone would just be ‘whoo whoo’ and [saying] ‘we love Deshauna she represents this country.’ And I have been positively received but there’s been a lot of negative [comments].” Barber said. “I was called tar monkey [and] the n-word. I had a lot of moments where people thought I was better off being Miss Africa USA versus Miss USA. And to me, it was very discouraging.”
“I had to really reevaluate how I feel emotionally about myself and the confidence that I have,” Barber continued. “Because there were moments where I was like ‘Man, am I really that ugly? Do people really think that I don’t deserve to represent this crown?’ Then I realized there’s a lot of little black and brown girls that look up to me saying, ‘She looks like me.’”
“I really had to understand that, ‘You know what, I’m an American woman. I can be Miss USA and just because my skin is black does not mean that I’m ugly,’” she said.
Watch her full interview below.