The Miss Earth competition is still weeks away. Already, its contestants have turned heads and raised eyebrows—not with their quirky talents or ability to wear clothing, but in conversation.
Miss Philippines Imelda Schweighart appeared on Facebook Live with Miss Austria Kimberly Budinsky. The two embrace and then Schweighart naturally asked about Hitler, the two being at a party and all and the beauty contestant clearly wanting to make meaningful small talk to be broadcast all over her Facebook page."OK that's a bad question," Budinsky says about being asked if Hitler was from Austria, "because we normally don't really talk about Hitler, but yes he is."
Schweighart then says that Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte is "doing Hitler stuff." Is he painting? Walking around with a silly mustache? Propagating anti-semitism and killing off millions of Jews?
Turns out he just wants to kill off substance abusers and is calling on quite the reprehensible figure for inspiration. According to Rappler, Duterte had this to say about his war on drugs:
Hitler massacred 3 million Jews. Now there [are] 3 million drug addicts…I’d be happy to slaughter them. At least if Germany had Hitler, the Philippines would have, you know, my victims. I would like to be–all criminals to finish the problem of my country and save the next generation from perdition.
Duterte has since apologized for his remarks and so has Schweighart. She deleted the video and issued a statement claiming that asking about Hitler was totally fine because Schweighart is half-Austrian.
"I got that idea wherein I said, 'Duterte is doing Hitler stuff' from online news, newspapers with headlines saying he is Hitler-like but for the good," Schweighart explained. "I was just not able to explain what I really meant further in Facebook Live because my mind was occupied with the other delegates I want to capture."
Miss Austria apparently saw it as no big deal, though the brief video is one of the most cringe-inducing things you'll watch all week, as is defending anyone or anything with the phrase "Hitler-like but for the good."