Oct 11, 2023

Dylan Mulvaney wants more partnerships with businesses, trans commuity after Bud Light fiasco

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Transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney said that more companies should work with a more diverse group of trans people following her disastrous partnership with Bud Light.

Mulvaney, 26, had partnered with dozens of other companies before a video announcing a deal with the beer company sparked immense backlash, costing Anheuser-Busch $27 billion in market value, according to Fox News.

In an interview with LGBTQ magazine "Them" published on Tuesday, Mulvaney acknowledged that as a white person with celebrity, she is among the "most privileged trans people in the country," and wants to use her new celebrity status to help more trans people partner with companies.

"For a long time, I felt so lucky that these opportunities were coming my way that I thought it was by accident. But now I realize how much power I actually have," Mulvaney said.

"If a brand wants to work with me so bad, then they should work with other trans people, too. It's not enough to just hire me, this white, skinny trans girl. I want all the dolls getting all the brand deals."

Mulvaney rose to fame chronicling her transition from a man to a woman on her TikTok in a series she dubbed "365 Days of Girlhood."

On April 1, to celebrate the conclusion of her transition, Bud Light sent the influencer custom-made can's featuring her face.

The recoil from the move was immediate, with conservatives blasting the company for going "woke" and calling for a boycott of the beer which has threatened Bud Light's position as the number one beer in America.

The company is still facing backlash two months after the initial controversy: Bud Light sales plunged again 23.9% for the week ended May 27 — slightly better than the 25.7% drop a week earlier and marking the first time that the sales decline didn't grow worse versus the previous week since the partnership with Mulvaney, according to data from Bump Williams Consulting and NielsonIQ.

Mulvaney declined to address her critics — which include fellow trans woman Caitlyn Jenner and conservative musician Kid Rock — in the interview.

"I prefer not to name any of those people, because it gives them the satisfaction of believing they’re on my mind," she said. "It shows my followers that I’m standing up for myself, but also pushes that their narrative is loud enough to matter."

The negative pushback — and even the support — she's received has been so polarizing that it's been frightening, she admitted.

"I’m scared," Mulvaney told Them. "I never expected to have people following me, or experience such negative media attention. I walk into a room and I never know if somebody is going to really love me or really hate me."

Mulvaney's rapid rise to the national stage was emphatically made when she was invited to The White House to interview President Biden last October.

She acknowledged that she had never considered herself an "activist" and now says she thinks a better representative for the community should have had that opportunity, including those of different races and sizes.

"I said ‘yes,’ because at that point I didn't realize the difference between existing as a trans person and being an activist," Mulvaney recalls. "But now I can think of a thousand other trans people who would’ve been even better."

"I am one of — if not the — most privileged trans people in this country right now," she continued. "I don't want people to look at me and say, ‘Oh, yep, the community's alright.’"

Despite the immediate backlash from the partnership with Mulvaney, Bud Light initially defended the move before later offering a half-hearted apology to its customers.

"We never intended to be part of a discussion that divides people," Anheuser-Busch InBev CEO Brendan Whitworth said in a press release. "We are in the business of bringing people together over a beer."

Mulvaney said she hopes to pursue a career as an actor in Hollywood.

"I think so much of my purpose could be elevating others’ voices. I would love to do that through Hollywood, where we still haven't seen enough exposure," Mulvaney said.