Karlie Hay hasn’t been Miss Teen USA a good week and she’s already at the center of controversy for language used in old tweets.
Hours after Hay was crowned Miss Teen USA it was pointed out through a Tweet that she had used the n-word in several tweets in 2013 and 2014, according to ABC News.
The tweets have since been deleted, but not before several people had screen-grabbed her casually using the racial slur over and over again in posts from 2013 and 2014. The pageant winner has since issued an apology on Twitter.
“Through hard work, education and thanks in large part to the sisterhood that I have come to know through pageants, I am proud to say that I am today a better person,” she continued. “I am honored to hold this title and I will use this platform to promote the values of The Miss Universe Organization, and my own, that recognize the confidence, beauty and perseverance of all women.”
The Miss Universe Organization, the parent company of Miss Teen USA, said in a statement to ABC News that though the language she used “unacceptable at any age and in no way reflects the values of The Miss Universe Organization,” she will keep her crown.
“As Karlie stated, she was in a different place in her life and made a serious mistake she regrets and for which she sincerely apologizes,” the statement said. “Karlie learned many lessons through those personal struggles that reshaped her life and values. We as an organization are committed to supporting her continued growth.”