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Smirnoff Denies Alleged Partnership With Controversial Trans Activist

TRUTH PUKE’S TAKE: Trans woman and drag queen Maxine LaQueene appeared to promote a paid partnership with Smirnoff in several recent Instagram posts. LaQueene is an outspoken LGBTQ activist who was recently removed from the Texas state capitol building for disrupting a legislature vote on a trans bill and allegedly flashed her private parts to bystanders who had children among them.

A representative for Smirnoff stated that LaQueene “is not currently a Smirnoff partner and does not currently have any contract with Smirnoff” and clarified that she was one of the participants in a promotional campaign in the fall of 2022 but not now in 2023.

The controversy has brought attention to the intersection of activism and corporate sponsorship. While LGBTQ+ individuals and activists may benefit from the financial support and visibility that comes with corporate partnerships, there is also the risk of co-optation and commercialization of their activism.

When a company partners with an individual, they are endorsing that individual’s views, beliefs, and actions. In this case, Smirnoff may be seen as supporting LaQueene’s activism, including her recent disruption of a legislature vote on a trans bill. Furthermore, the controversy surrounding LaQueene’s allegedly flashing her private parts to bystanders highlights the delicate balance that companies must navigate in supporting social and political movements.

While it is essential for companies to support marginalized communities, they must also be careful not to associate their brand with controversial or potentially offensive behavior.

Recently, the marketing campaign featuring transwoman Dylan Mulvaney has had a profound impact on Bud Light’s sales, causing a significant decline in sales dollars and volume.

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