Is transgender Miss Universe Canada contestant a victim of Donald Trump's presidential ambition?
On the surface, it sounds ridiculous. Why would a billionaire real-estate and casino magnate like Donald Trump give a hoot about a young Vancouver transgender woman who dreams of becoming Miss Universe?
Trump owns the pageant, whose Canadian affiliate bounced Jenna Talackova out of the Canadian competition because she's allegedly not a naturally born female. Not everyone agrees with that assessment.
An online petition protesting the move has attracted more than 30,000 signatures.
In a curious coincidence, Mother Jones published a feature article last year called "Donald Trump's Big Gay Problem".
Reporter Andy Kroll noted that Trump used to be a champion of gay and lesbian rights. However, that changed once he started courting hardline socially conservative wingnuts in the Republican Party.
"Last month, Trump told the Des Moines Register that he opposes giving gay couples the same benefits as married ones, a position that's in stark contrast to his past support for gay rights on everything from domestic partner benefits and civil unions to gays serving openly in the military," Kroll wrote. "Asked about his position legalizing on gay marriage and giving 'civil benefits' to gay couples, he replied, 'No and no.' (A Trump spokesman did not respond to a request for comment.)"
Trump didn't enter the race for the Republican presidential nomination, despite sending signals that he's interested in the job.
With the U.S. economy improving and the Republican contest in tatters, there's a good chance that Barack Obama will be reelected this November on the Democratic ticket.
That leaves Trump free to work on plans to run for the White House in 2016. But if his beauty pageant allows a transgender contestant, it won't sit well with the party's drooling troglodytes and religious fanatics who support the likes of Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich.
Don't think for a moment that the Donald hasn't thought of this.
In the meantime, a Vancouver woman is forced to endure discrimination at the hands of a Trump company.
Perhaps the time has come for the transgender community and its supporters to start holding noisy demonstrations outside Trump's luxurious hotels.
That will get his attention.
Follow Charlie Smith on Twitter at twitter.com/csmithstraight.