Kathryn Lindsay
May 20, 2016 7:44 pm
Santiago Felipe/Getting Images

Winning Miss Universe sounds like one of the ultimate honors — and it is! — but victory isn’t as sweet if it comes with a large dose of body-shaming. Alicia Michado, who won the title back in 1996, says she experienced just that. In an interview with Inside Editionthe former Miss Universe alleges that Donald Trump, who owns the operating company, body shamed her after she gained weight, calling the then-19-year-old “Miss Piggy” and “Miss Housekeeping.”

Alicia, who is now 39, claims that Trump bullied her “all the time.” He even spoke to the press about her weight gain, saying on Howard Stern’s radio show, “She weighed 118 pounds or 117 pounds and she went to 160 or 170. So this is somebody that likes to eat.”

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Now, the winner is speaking up in the name of all those who’ve suffered unfair attacks because of their bodies. She says that Trump’s words caused her years of psychotherapy and battling eating disorders, but she’s determined to come out on top.

I think it’s safe to say she’s doing a pretty excellent job. Inside Edition reports that she is working on two major projects in Hollywood, and has also just signed with a publisher for her memoir. She’s also about to become an American citizen, and can use her vote to express just how much she’s against this kind of treatment.

No matter how we feel politically, body-shaming is never okay. All sizes are beautiful, period. No one should be made to feel like a lesser person because of their weight. We’re so proud of Alicia’s bravery, and that she’s using such a hurtful experience to make a difference.

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