Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez turns up on Donkey Kong stream to back trans rights
US Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez turned up on a viral Twitch livestream of Donkey Kong 64 to talk about trans rights.
UK-based YouTuber HBomberGuy (Harry Brewis) has raised more than $200,000 for transgender children’s charity Mermaids with a non-stop playthrough of the Nintendo 64 Donkey Kong game, beginning in the evening of January 18.
The stream, which had featured guests including whistleblower Chelsea Manning, had been live for more than 50 hours when Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez made a surprise appearance via a Discord call.
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: Trans rights are human rights
The newly-elected Congresswoman, who has earned a strong following online, spoke about the importance of trans rights, adding: “Trans rights are civil rights are human rights.”
She addressed the lack of federal anti-discrimination protections for transgender people in the US, adding: “It’s important that we do talk about these issues in the economic frame, but not let go of the fact that discrimination is a core reason for economic hardship.”
Addressing the vast amount of money raised by the stream, the Congresswoman added: “Thank you for doing this work. I appreciate it. Everyone appreciates it.
“I’m so happy that we can have this spontaneous, joyous and supportive moments, and any one of us can be the source of it.”
Ocasio-Cortez also spoke about the need for tax reform and addressed the government shutdown, as well as speaking about her favourite childhood video games.
After the stream, the congresswoman tweeted: “If you’d like to use this as a good moment to support the queer community, there’s a charity twitch stream going on for [Mermaids].
“It was great popping in and chatting with you all thanks for inviting me!”
Stream was inspired by anti-transgender media discussions
In a video ahead of the stream, Brewis explained that he would be playing through Donkey Kong 64 until 101% completion—a famously difficult feat in the Nintendo 64 game that can take upwards of 30 hours to achieve, plus breaks for sleeping.
He explained: “I chose to support [Mermaids] because as a person living in Britain, I find the media discussion around this issue to be woefully misinformed, and I’d like to do my bit to help support the people who do the hard work of contributing to people’s thinking on an issue.”
The YouTuber added: “I chose Mermaids specifically, because when they were designated some funding via the National Lottery, Graham Linehan, a comedy writer who did some work on a good show 20 years ago, a very normal man who is very angry about trans people all day nowadays, went on Mumsnet and told them to email the National Lottery en masse.
“Well done, Graham… now, tons of people know about Mermaids, and support them just to spite you!”
The viral stream has also attracted support from Cher, who retweeted a message of support.
MyPinkNews members are invited to comment on articles to discuss the content we publish, or debate issues more generally. Please familiarise yourself with our community guidelines to ensure that our community remains a safe and inclusive space for all.