Miss Teen USA contestant, Lauren Caitlin Upton (17), was asked why one-fifth of Americans couldn’t find USA on a map. What followed was a bumbling answer that would make George Bush proud. Think Miss Congeniality and “Describe your perfect date” (see answer below*)
Now before we get into the details, keep in mind that this is a 17 year old girl, who was asked an unbelievable question in a deliberately misleading way. She also seems to be under a time limit so she has to answer a complex issue in a matter of seconds. Now if you were to start off on the wrong foot, how well do you think you’d recover? Think back to your first job interviews.
Question: ?Recent polls have shown a fifth of Americans can?t locate the U.S. on a world map. Why do you think this is??
Answer: ?I personally believe? that? U.S. Americans are unable to do so? because? uh?some ? people out there in our nation don?t have maps and?. uh, I believe that our, ah, education like such as? in South Africa, and, uh, the Iraq, like everywhere like?such as? and I believe that they should, uh, our education over here in the U.S. should help the U.S., or should help South Africa, it should help the Iraq and the Asian countries? so we will be able to build up our future?for our children.?
Upton told South Carolina’s The State newspaper she “completely misunderstood” the question and “didn’t do anything wrong”. “I wasn’t expecting (the question). I lost my train of thought.” Despite the fumble, Upton placed third runner-up in the Miss Teen USA competition.
Upton had a second chance to answer the question when she appeared on The Today Show. She said she “went into complete shock” when she was asked the question. “Everything came at me at once. I was overwhelmed and I made a mistake…I am sitting here laughing at myself because I feel like ‘is that really me standing up there answering that question?”
Rather than make fun of Miss Upton, I’d like to ask you to answer the question. Why do you think a fifth of Americans can’t locate the U.S. on the map?
*April 25th. Cause it’s not too hot, and it’s not too cold. All you need is a light jacket!