Asya Branch stunned audiences last night in Florida at the 2020 Miss Universe competition.
On Thursday, the 74 contestants for this year’s Miss Universe competition walked the runway in fabulous costumes designed to show off the art and culture of their home countries. But it was Miss USA Asya Branch’s mockingbird costume that really stole the show.
Mockingbird or Mockingjay?
While past contestants have opted for the obvious — costumes inspired by the American flag or Lady Liberty — Branch chose a costume that was a little closer to home. Having been the first black woman from Mississippi to win the Miss USA competition, she wanted to bring a piece of her home state with her to the worldwide contest.
In an Instagram post this morning, she shared the meaning behind the choice: “I was raised in Mississippi where our state bird is the mockingbird. This bird has 30 songs in its repertoire that it uses to draw friends near. I began singing at the age of 5, and I believe each of us has a song in our hearts that nurtures our souls much like the mockingbird.”
“After the past year the universe experienced, I think it’s also important that we let our fire within burn brighter than the fire that surrounds us. One flame can ignite the fires of many inspiring others to spread their wings, fight for justice, and illuminate the world.”
“This costume symbolizes strength, passion, and liberation. I hope that the mockingbird, its wings, and the imagery of the flames inspire the songs of strength in unity, the passion to ignite the light of others, and the freedom to soar in one’s calling.”
I couldn’t help noticing the similarities between her costume choice, the caption in her post, and a certain heroine who’s also famous for wearing a bird’s wings — Katniss Everdeen. Sure, Miss USA’s ballgown didn’t disintegrate in flames to reveal a mockingjay dress as a symbol of the rebellion, but it sure got close.
Like Katniss, Asya Branch Is No Stranger To Standing up for What She Believes in
Branch made headlines after her Miss USA win for her defense of American values and Second Amendment rights. She hasn’t bowed down to political correctness or petty political squabblings and instead stays classy, articulate, and steadfast in the defense of her beliefs. It’s become hip lately to trash talk America, as if we’re supposed to constantly apologize to other countries for simply existing. Thank goodness we have a Miss USA who wants to represent our country to the best of her ability — showing off its best side, not wallowing in its worst.
The mockingbird costume is more than just an ode to her home state. It’s a symbol of redemption and hope for a country that’s increasingly torn apart. It’s also a subtle symbol of rebellion against a culture that demands conformity to one certain set of beliefs. America is about the freedom to stand up for what you believe, and there’s no one better to represent us on the international stage this year than Asya Branch.
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