In the midst of Indonesia’s current LGBT moral panic, simply being transgender can be dangerous. In January, police in sharia-enforcing Aceh detained and publicly humiliated a group of transgender women (known in Indonesia as waria, a portmanteau of the words for woman and man) while the social services agency of Jakarta is currently targeting waria and unjustly detaining them for having “social dysfunctions”.
Despite the violence they face at home, transgender Indonesians continue to fight for respect and acceptance within Indonesia and on the international stage. Which is why we were especially proud to see that 21-year-old Indonesian model Dinda Syarif, who competed at the Miss International Queen (the world’s most famous transgender beauty pageant) in Pattaya, Thailand, on Friday, managed to take home the prize for best national costume award with this fabulous number:
Best National CostumeDINDA SYARIFINDONESIAInstragram : Missinternationalqueen…
As described in Dinda’s Instagram post, the costume is called Mustika Kelana, weighing 30 kg and is based on the distinctive dance masks of Cirebon.
Although she did not manage to take home the top prize, Dinda clearly did an excellent job representing her homeland at the pageant (she also adds to the best national costume wins by Elvira Devinamira at Miss Universe 2015 and Dea Goesti Rizkita at Miss Grand International 2017)
Nguyen Huong Giang from Vietnam won the crown of Miss International Queen 2018 while second place went to Jacqueline from Australia.
Top 12 Finalists JACQUELINEAUSTRALIAInstragram : Missinternationalqueen…
Top 12 Finalists NGUYEN HUONG GIANGVIETNAMInstragram : Missinternationalqueen…
Miss International Queen, which has been held annually in Pattaya since 2004, aims to increase awareness and equality for all LGBT and transgender people. The profits from the televised contest go towards the Royal Charity AIDS Foundation of Thailand.
Our congratulations to Dinda on her big win, we hope that it helps move the needle of tolerance in Indonesia a little bit closer towards acceptance for all LGBT people (at the very least, it got a mainstream publication like Detik to say that her win was something worth being proud of, which is certainly something).
Membanggakan! Transgender Indonesia membawa nama Indonesia sebagai best custome di Thailand. Penasaran dengan kostumnya?via wolipop.com