US: Bud Light beer comes out in support of equal marriage

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

As part of a social media campaign to raise awareness and support for equal marriage, US beer company Bud Light, has offered its support to the cause, as the US Supreme Court considers arguments around two cases.

Bud Light, owned by Anheuser-Busch, posted on its Facebook page an altered version of a Human Rights Campaign logo, which was adopted by hundreds of thousands of people, as their profile pictures yesterday.

The picture showed two cans of Bud Light lined up like equals signs, reports BusinessInsider. The post got 34,000 likes and 1,400 comments in fifteen hours.

The decision to post the image proved controversial, with some declaring support for equal marriage, and others saying that they opposed it. Some Facebook users took the opportunity to say they would boycott the company for posting it.

Those opposed to equal marriage, and the decision to post the image wrote messages such as: “You guys can have gay marriage as long as it’s a gay man marrying a gay woman. Anything else is wrong and against the Lord’s will.”

Another post said: “To the Christian believer I say homosexuality is a sin, mentioned over and over as such in the Bible. Abstain from it in love to God and love toward your neighbor.”

Others said they would boycott the company: “Thanks Bud Light for making me realize you are as corrupt as this world. I’m kicking you out of my fridge!” and “Been drinking Bud Light religiously for 15 years straight and this as now came to an end because of this pic.”

The post also drew some very positive comments. One simply read: “Bud Light, I’m simply stunned. Thank you,” and another said: “Wow, very brave move Bud Light. That is awesome that you support EQUALITY!”

Some said they had never bought the product before, but that they would, now that the company has reaffirmed its pro-equality stance.

One user wrote: “I’ve never really liked bud light, but I plan on buying two or three cases this weekend. Thanks for doing this.”

“In spite of what is ‘perceived’ to be the stereotype bud light customer base, they still used social media to support equality. I’m very proud, but still can’t stomach a regular Bud Light. I’ll show my support by having a Bud Light Platinum!”, another said.

High profile posters of the altered logo included Beyoncé and Madonna, as well as Star Trek’s George Takei, and the satirical Facebook page for God, which posted an image of Ladies Liberty and Justice kissing.

The drinks company has in the past supported the LGBT community, and has been boycotted for its pro-equality stance. In 1999 it advertised in a gay magazine, much to the displeasure of conservative groups.

Last year Anheuser-Busch, a major sponsor of the Ultimate Fighting Championship mixed martial arts events, complained to organisers about homophobic comments made by competitors and staff.

The company then released a statement whcih said: “We’ve communicated to the UFC our displeasure with certain remarks made by some of its fighters, and they have promised to address this. If the incidents continue, we will act.”

In a second day of landmark hearings, the US Supreme Court is today to take on arguments around the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which bans equal marriage across the US.

In yesterday’s hearing, the court heard oral arguments around Proposition 8, the state of California’s 2008 ban on equal marriage, the justices questioned the meaning of marriage, and challenged arguments for the ban.