Beauty queen Cindy Meija, Miss Peru 2012, has told newspaper Peru21 that god wouldn’t allow her to have a gay son.
She said boys only turn gay because of their father being absent, rape or from being too close to their mother and sisters.
She also refused to endorse the desicion by the organizers of Miss Universe to allow transgender women to compete.
But faced with massive criticism Mejia denied she made such statements and said that they were taken out of context and distorted.
A wide debate is now occuring in Peru as to how best to react to her homophobic statements.
When Mejia was asked on 6 July for her opinion on Miss Universe’s decision to permit transgender women to compete from 2013 she said: ‘I respect the decision of all people, but that was up to the company organizing the competition to decide whether to accept them or not.’
But when asked what would happen if she had a gay son the beauty queen was even less diplomatic.
‘The day that god will allow me to have children… this couldn’t happen, as these things happen when a father is absent, when one suffers rape, or when a person lives alone with his mother and sisters causing the child to adopt such manners.’
Miss Peru added that god wouldn’t allow this as she will give herself ‘over to him completely and raise a good child, with a father and mother by their side.’
Mejia received a barrage of criticism from throughout the Peruvian media, social workers and gay rights campaigners, with many calling upon her to give up her crown.
Mejia accused the paper of manipulating and editing her interview.
She defended herself by saying ‘my best friend is gay’, and saying that she won’t give up her title.
As a response Peru21 published the audio tape recording of the interview which confirmed, despite her denials, that she did make these statements.
Reactions in the Peruvian media have consequently shifted from outrage over her comments to ridicule.
Carlos Cacho, a famous Peruvian gay makeup artist called her a liar and said: ‘The poor girl is just stupid and ignorant, it’s not her fault she has a questionable IQ.
‘Rather it is the fault of those who put the crown on that hollow head of hers.’
Celebrity host Rodrigo Gonzalez of the popular show Amor, Amor, Amor said Mejia’s ‘brain must have been hacked.
‘You don’t have to just look pretty but look in the newspapers… to see that there is bullying in school, and murders throughout the world.
‘The world is fighting against homophobia, inequality, and for gender equality and then we have the representative of our country’s beauty declare such silliness. How sad and infinitely stupid Cindy Mejia is.’
Meanwhile twitter users throughout Peru have decided to crown Mejia with the title Miss Homophobia using the Twitter hashtag #Misshomofobia (Spanish).
Peruvians are now debating whether the beauty queen should lose her crown for her homophobic statements.