Transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney says Bud Light didn’t support her during backlash

by Gabriel Martinez
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transgender influencer

Dylan Mulvaney, a prominent transgender influencer, expressed disappointment in Bud Light, claiming that the beer company failed to support her amidst a wave of backlash characterized by relentless bullying and transphobia.

Mulvaney disclosed the emotional toll she endured, stating, “For months, I have lived in fear, reluctant to step outside my own home. I have endured public ridicule, persistent harassment, and an overwhelming sense of isolation that no one should ever have to experience.”

The controversy erupted when Mulvaney featured herself opening a Bud Light in an Instagram video on April 1, as part of a promotional contest for the brand. Displaying a can adorned with her own image, which Bud Light had sent to her as one of several corporate gifts she shares with her millions of followers, the influencer unwittingly triggered an onslaught of criticism and hate.

While conservative figures and other individuals called for a boycott of Bud Light, Mulvaney’s supporters directed their ire towards the beer company, claiming that it did not do enough to stand by her during the ordeal.

In the aftermath, two marketing executives within Anheuser-Busch InBev, Bud Light’s parent company, took a leave of absence. Furthermore, Bud Light lost its position as America’s best-selling beer, a distinction it had held for decades. The Human Rights Campaign, the largest LGBTQ+ advocacy group in the country, suspended its benchmark equality and inclusion rating for the brewing giant.

Mulvaney, refraining from explicitly naming Bud Light, expressed her frustration, stating, “When a company employs a transgender individual but fails to publicly support them, it sends a message that customers are free to engage in as much transphobia and hatred as they please.”

Despite attempts to obtain comment from Belgium-based ABInBev, the company did not immediately respond to email inquiries.

In an official statement released on April 14, Anheuser-Busch CEO Brendan Whitworth expressed that the company had never intended to contribute to a divisive discourse, emphasizing their commitment to bringing people together through the enjoyment of beer.

Similar controversies have arisen recently, affecting companies such as Target and Starbucks, as they faced criticism for their attempts to connect with the LGBTQ+ community, particularly during Pride celebrations in June. These companies encountered further backlash when their subsequent actions were perceived as backpedaling.

This ongoing dispute emerges within a wider and heated debate concerning the rights of transgender individuals. Notably, since the beginning of this year, at least 17 states have implemented laws limiting or prohibiting gender-affirming care for minors.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about transgender influencer

Q: What led to the backlash against Bud Light and the transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney?

A: The backlash against Bud Light and Dylan Mulvaney stemmed from an Instagram video where Mulvaney promoted Bud Light as part of a promotional contest. This triggered criticism and transphobic attacks, leading to a boycott of Bud Light and accusations that the company did not support Mulvaney adequately.

Q: How did Bud Light respond to the situation?

A: Bud Light, under parent company Anheuser-Busch InBev, faced repercussions such as losing its position as America’s best-selling beer. Two marketing executives took a leave of absence. Bud Light’s response was not explicitly mentioned in the article.

Q: What actions were taken by the Human Rights Campaign?

A: The Human Rights Campaign, a prominent LGBTQ+ advocacy group, suspended its equality and inclusion rating for Anheuser-Busch InBev, the parent company of Bud Light. This action was likely a response to perceived inadequate support for Dylan Mulvaney.

Q: How did the controversy impact other companies?

A: The article mentions that other companies, such as Target and Starbucks, have faced similar backlash for their attempts to connect with the LGBTQ+ community during Pride celebrations. They received criticism when perceived backpedaling occurred.

Q: What is the wider debate mentioned in the article?

A: The wider debate refers to the ongoing discussions surrounding the rights of transgender individuals. The article highlights that at least 17 states have implemented laws limiting or banning gender-affirming care for minors, which has contributed to a heated and contentious discourse.

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