Still crying over your cans of Bud Light? Well, that’s too bad, because TikTok star and trans actress Dylan Mulvaney wants the right-wing media — and Bud Light — to know that no amount of backlash will stop her from fighting for her community.
Best known for her viral TikTok series Days of Girlhood, Mulvaney’s status as a visible and unapologetic trans entertainer has made her a target of harassment. And in early April, a small collaboration the influencer posted with Bud Light quickly became the main focus of conservative talking heads. Artists like Kid Rock and country singer Travis Tritt called for a national boycott of the beer — with Rock even going so far as to film himself tearfully shooting bullets into cases of Bud Light in response. Others, like Sebastian Gorka, YouTuber Vince Dao, Candice Owens, and Twitter shitposter Catturd2 accused Bud Light, and its parent company Anheuser-Busch, of “going woke,” by partnering with Mulvaney. While the controversy was completely contrived by conservative voices, that didn’t keep Bud Light from quickly backtracking — removing any trace of the collaboration, making a major switch up in the marketing department, and immediately releasing a sepia-toned, All-American, bald eagle and apple pie commercial — all without ever publically standing behind Mulvaney.
Now, in a video released Thursday, Mulvaney is calling out Bud Light for not having her back through the controversy. The trans TikTok star said she should have made a video months ago but was waiting for the backlash to die down and for Bud Light to reach out to her — which she says never happened. (Anheuser-Busch did not immediately respond to Rolling Stone‘s request for comment.)
“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 in the video posted Thursday. “And the hate doesn’t end with me. It has serious and grave consequences for the rest of our community. We’re customers too. I know a lot of trans and queer people who love beer. And I have some lesbian friends who could drink some of those haters under the table.”
Mulvaney added that in the months following her Bud Light post, she experienced serious harassment and transphobia — which has only intensified her desire to support the trans community.
“What transpired from that video was more bullying and transphobia than I could have ever imagined. For months now, I’ve been scared to leave my house. I have been ridiculed in public. I’ve been followed. And I have felt a loneliness that I wouldn’t wish on anyone,” Mulvaney said. “And I’m not telling you this because I want your pity. I am telling you this because if this is my experience, from a very privileged perspective, know that it is much much worse for other trans people.”
Mulvaney is no stranger to targeted, aggressive backlash. In fact, in a March interview with Rolling Stone, the TikTok star explained that a major part of her journey was realizing that her people-pleasing nature couldn’t convince bigots to love her. Now, she’s turning all of her energy to support the trans community— and encouraging her fans to keep their celebratory energy up even when Pride month ends.
“I’m going to celebrate being alive and I’m going to celebrate the trans people in my life and the ones that haven’t met yet,” Mulvaney said. “I’m going to celebrate the fact that no matter how many thousands of horrible messages or news anchors misgendering me or companies going silent, that I can look in the mirror and see the woman that I am, and that I love being.”