DENVER — Miss Colorado is making waves across the world after performing a monologue about her career as a nurse at the Miss America pageant.
Co-hosts of the morning talk show “The View” bashed Kelley Johnson’s talent performance.
“She came out in a nurse’s uniform and basically read her emails out loud. And shockingly she didn’t win. I was like that’s not a real talent,” said “The View” co-host Michelle Collins.
Co-host Joy Behar also asked why the Windsor native has “a doctor’s stethoscope on?”
The women have since apologized for their statements, saying on the show Wednesday “We love nurses … we adore you, we respect you.” Still, the comments are sparking a nationwide backlash from nurses on social media.
“We’re all banding together and taking our picture and posting on Facebook,” said Kandi Zackery, a nurse at Swedish Belmar ER.
Thousands of tweets have been sent using the hashtag #NursesUnited and the movement has even garnered support from national organizations like the American Nurse Association.
“It’s hurtful to the profession that they would think it’s just a costume,” Zackery said.
The 26-year veteran said despite the negative comments, Miss Colorado’s performance is starting a conversation that is long overdue.
“If someone needs their life saved we can start IV’s and get them on monitors and do CPR,” Zackery said. She says nurses are often underestimated and is glad Miss Colorado is doing what she can to change that.
“To truly have it be your talent she’s willing to stand up for all nurses, man I was truly proud,” Zackery said.
Collins explained her comments on Wednesday’s show saying, “I was not talking about her as a nurse I was talking about the talent competition. It got misconstrued.”
Behar also said she was confused, “I’m thinking is she in a costume? I didn’t know she was a nurse. I’m used to seeing them in gowns and bathing suits. So it’s not like I was trying to be funny it was stupid and inattentive on my part.”