Anheuser-Busch heir Billy Busch ripped Bud Light for its role in tanking the brand after rolling out a promotional can featuring transgender activist Dylan Mulvaney.
“I think my family — my ancestors would have rolled over in their graves,” Busch told TMZ during a recent interview. “They believed that transgender, gays, that sort of thing was all a very personal issue. They loved this country because it is a free country and people are allowed to do what they want, but it was never meant to be on a beer can and never meant to be pushed in people’s faces.”
TMZ host Harvey Levin then claimed that the goal behind the promotional can was “inclusivity” before asking about public reaction to the promotion.
“You know, I think people who drink beer, I think they’re your common folk. I think they are the blue-collar worker who goes and works hard every single day,” Busch said. “The last thing they want pushed down their throat or to be drinking is a beer can with that kind of message on it. I just don’t think that’s what they’re looking for. They want their beer to be truly American, truly patriotic, as it always has been. Truly, America’s beer, which Bud Light was and probably isn’t any longer.”
Levin followed up by claiming that the backlash is fueled by “prejudice” against transgender individuals. “Absolutely it’s prejudice,” Levin said. “Look, I remember my dad telling me stories that there were bars in LA that used to have signs that said, ‘No dogs, no Jews.’ So there’s been a history of prejudice in the country. People get over certain things. It’s happened to Jews. It’s happened to black people. It’s happening to gay people, and it’s happening to transgender people. So to me, it is absolutely prejudice.”
Busch rejected the comparison, saying “I just think prejudice against Jews against Black people, those kinds of things are a totally different deal.”
A recent second quarter analysis found that Anheuser Busch found that the beer giant’s revenue dipped by 10% in the period, amounting to a loss of roughly 400 million.