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Robert Namer
Voice Of America
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May 22, 2023

     Five Chicago gay bars are boycotting Anheuser-Busch for distancing itself from transgender social media star Dylan Mulvaney after her Arpil 1 collaboration drew conservatives’ ire and calls for a Bud Light boycott.  Both sides are being stupid, but one side is acting right.

     Sidetrack Bar in Chicago’s Lakeview neighborhood shared its boycott plan on Instagram, noting the brewer’s moves “strongly bring into question their support of the LGBTQ+ community.”  “For 41 years Sidetrack has encouraged liquor and beer companies that have wished to garner the LGBTQ+ customer base to actively support our community,” the bar’s statement said.  “Bud Light’s recent decision to drop the Dylan Mulvaney campaign, to put on ‘leave’ those who created it, as well as the statement by its CEO, wrongfully validates the position that it is acceptable to acquiesce to the demands of those who do not support the Trans community and wish to erase LGBTQ+ visibility,” it said. 

     The bar said its Anheuser-Busch boycott would continue until the brewer “can clearly demonstrate that they will not acquiesce to the voices of hate that wish to erase LGBTQ+ existence.”  2Bears Tavern Group announced its four bars will no longer carry Anheuser-Busch products due to “anti-transgender actions and statements.”  In its announcement on Instagram, the group dragged the statement offered by Anheuser-Busch CEO Brendan Whitworth amid the controversy.

     “Its CEO’s statement, in which he all but erased transgender people in favor of anti-trans vitriol, was cruel and hurtful. CEO Brendan Whitworth’s excuse that Anheuser-Busch ‘never intended to be part of a discussion that divides people’ was tantamount to saying that the rights and safety of transgender people are topics worthy of debate.”  

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