Charlie Kirk(l), Raw milk illustration(C)

Gage Skidmore/Flickr Turning Point USA (CC-BY)

‘What is she drinking then?’: TPUSA promotion for raw milk features cow without udders

‘Yeah, milk from a bull isn’t milk.’

 

Mikael Thalen

Tech

Turning Point USA (TPUSA), the conservative student organization run by right-wing figure Charlie Kirk, is raising eyebrows after releasing a T-shirt promoting the consumption of raw milk.

The T-shirt, which includes the phrase “got raw milk?,” is being promoted across social media by TPUSA members and sells for $35 on the group’s website.

TPUSA’s campaign is already receiving backlash due to the ongoing outbreak of bird flu, a virus that can in some cases spread to humans. Scientists have detected high amounts of the virus in, among other things, raw milk.

However, conservatives have championed raw milk, arguing that the pasteurization process destroys not just harmful bacteria but beneficial bacteria as well. Republican lawmakers in recent years have introduced legislation aimed at legalizing the sale of raw milk. And while only a tiny fraction of the country drinks raw milk regularly, the growing distrust of health officials among conservatives, especially following the COVID-19 pandemic, has made the drink seemingly more enticing than ever.

But it’s not just the right-wing group’s promotion of unpasteurized milk during the viral outbreak that is turning heads. Many were quick to note that the cow on the T-shirt did not have utters and therefore is incapable of producing milk.

In response to the initial pushback, which included critical coverage from the left-wing non-profit Media Matters for America, TPUSA member Alex Clark defended the T-shirt as well as the message behind it.

“Now let me introduce you to my ‘got raw milk’ crop top with @TPUSA which is triggering the left,” Clark wrote. “Imagine shilling for pasteurized milk, zapped of nutrients, when you could have immune boosting raw milk.”

Yet questions began to arise about the T-shirt given its use of a male cow.

“So, why is there a bull (male) on the shirt?” one user asked. “Cows (female) have utters that produce milk.”

“Might need to draw some teats on that bull,” another said.

And since the cow on the T-shirt could not produce milk, even more questions were raised about what was in the glass in the advertisement featured by Clark.

“Yea, milk from a bull isn’t milk,” one commenter said.

“DEAR GOD WHAT IS SHE DRINKING THEN?” joked one user.

TPUSA supporters, however, did not appear to catch on. Instead, fans of the organization remarked on how badly they wanted the T-shirt.

“Taking a break from pouting to obsess over this shirt,” a user named “Daughter of Wolves” wrote. “I’ve been drinking raw milk for about 2 years now and yes, I will be buying this shirt.”

Despite the apparent mistake, TPUSA appears to be ignoring the issue and continuing to promote the T-shirt.


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