Mulvaney talks of struggling with loneliness and months of ridicule
Transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney says she felt abandoned by Bud Light after facing "more bullying and transphobia than I could have ever imagined" over her partnership with the beer giant.
In a video posted Thursday to Instagram and TikTok, she said she "was waiting for the brand to reach out to me. But they never did." She said she should have spoken out sooner but was afraid and hoped things would get better — but they didn't.
"For months now, I've been scared to leave my house," Mulvaney said. "I have been ridiculed in public. I've been followed, and I have felt a loneliness that I wouldn't wish on anyone."
A deluge of criticism and hate erupted soon after Mulvaney cracked open a Bud Light in an Instagram video on April 1as part of a social media promotion for the beer.She showed off a can emblazoned with her face that Bud Light sent to her — one of many corporate freebies she gets and shares with her millions of followers.
Conservative figures and others called for a boycott of Bud Light, while Mulvaney's supporters criticized the brand for not doing enough to support her.
How Bud Light mishandled the Dylan Mulvaney backlash
Bud Light’s hiring of trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney prompted conservative backlash, but the company’s handling of that backlash lead to even more criticism from the LGBT community.
In the weeks and months that followed, two marketing executives at parent company Anheuser-Busch InBev took a leave of absence, Bud Light lost its decades-long position as America's best-selling beer and the Human Rights Campaign, the country's largest advocacy group for LGBTQ rights, suspended its benchmark equality and inclusion rating for the brewing giant.
"For a company to hire a trans person and then not publicly stand by them is worse, in my opinion, than not hiring a trans person at all — because it gives customers permission to be as transphobic and hateful as they want," Mulvaney said, without naming Bud Light.
Belgium-based ABInBev didn't immediately respond to emails seeking comment Friday.
In an April 14 statement, Anheuser-Busch CEO Brendan Whitworth said the company "never intended to be part of a discussion that divides people. We are in the business of bringing people together over a beer."
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