Hunter Schafer

Why Do People Hate Hunter Schafer?

A common reason some people dislike Hunter Schafer is the perception that her fame and success have been largely unearned. As a young trans actress, many felt she achieved too much prominence too fast when she landed the breakout role of Jules on HBO’s Euphoria.

Prior to Euphoria, Schafer had no professional acting experience. Yet almost immediately she was starring in one of the most buzzed-about new shows in years. This led some to accuse her and the show’s producers of capitalizing on diversity and identity politics to fuel her rise.

“It seemed unfair how quickly this unknown trans actress was launched into the spotlight when so many marginalized actors struggle for years without getting a break.” – Television critic

To these detractors, neither Schafer’s background as a trans activist nor her minimal acting resume justified the hype surrounding her “It Girl” status in 2019. The overnight fame and adulation from mainstream audiences struck them as undeserved and unwarranted for an actress of her inexperience.

Perceived Lack of Gratitude for Breakout Opportunity

Connected to the idea that Schafer did not sufficiently “earn” or pay her dues prior to Euphoria is the belief held by some that she has failed to show adequate gratitude for her breakout opportunity.

Instead of acknowledging her privileged status as a beneficiary of diversity initiatives in Hollywood, some feel she adopts a self-congratulatory tone.

“Considering her whole career is due to the concerted efforts to improve trans representation on TV, the least she could do is express some humility and appreciation for those who paved the way.” – Entertainment blogger

Certain social media statements and acceptance speech anecdotes citing herself or close collaborators as the sole agents of her success have rubbed detractors the wrong way. Whether due to youthful naivete or willful ignorance, Schafer’s apparent failure to credit the trans pioneers before her contributes to negative perceptions.

Personal Public Statements & Social Media Presence

Separate from her acting career, Schafer has made public statements across interviews and social media platforms that have sparked significant criticism and even outrage online:

Alienating Generalizations About Experiences

When speaking about her life experiences, Schafer has at times made controversial generalizations that many lambast as dismissive or diminutive of the struggles faced by certain marginalized groups:

  • In a June 2022 profile, she was quoted saying, “I feel bad for any trans girl who isn’t tall and white like me. Being a short ethnic trans must be so hard for them to achieve society’s expectation of femininity since they’ll never measure up.”
  • Across Twitter and Instagram, she has frequently cited statistics claiming over 80% of cisgender heterosexuals hold deeply discriminatory views of LGBTQ+ people.

These types of overarching statements holding negative perceptions of large identity groups are cited as alienating and failing to advance constructive discussion.

Tone-Deaf Comparison to More Oppressed Groups

In describing her activism and perspective on trans-related causes, Schafer has drawn intense criticism for appearing to equate the discrimination faced by trans individuals to the historical oppression endured by communities of color.

In one notorious example, she utilized language evoking the 1960s Civil Rights Movement to advocate for modern trans bathroom bills, sparking accusations of appropriating another group’s suffering for her own ends.

Performative Wokeness or Virtue Signaling

Like many celebrities today using their platform to support social or political causes, Schafer is not immune to allegations of engaging in “performative wokeness” or “virtue signaling.”

Whether speaking out against JK Rowling’s trans views or advocating worker strikes in Hollywood, critics dismiss Schafer’s stances as superficial attempts to bolster her own brand rather than meaningful stands aligned to her values.

This ties back to overarching notions discussed previously that she adopts social justice postures to compensate for an underserved rise to prominence lacking real struggle.

Unconventional Gender Presentation & Expression

As a non-binary trans actress firmly situated in the zeitgeist of modern youth culture, Schafer’s aesthetic and manner of self-expression stands in stark contrast to societal norms around traditional femininity. For conservative critics, her evolving style and confidence make her a prime target:

Androgynous Personal Style

Unapologetically standing over six feet tall, Schafer makes no effort to downplay her height nor minimize her long limbs. Far from body-con dresses and revealing necklines, she generally opts for oversized suiting and voluminous separates in her public appearances:

To critics holding reactionary views on fixed gender expression, Schafer’s fluid personal aesthetics blurring the lines between masculine and feminine violates their worldview.

Defiance Around Being Sexualized

Perhaps most controversially, Schafer has been outspoken in pushing back against sexualization and refusing to curb her self-expression to placate the male gaze.

She has called out media outlets for focusing coverage on her body and relationships rather than her talent and skill. And despite external pressure, she continues to celebrate her womanhood without reservation across her fashion, writing, and personal photos shared on social media:

Her bold, unabashed demonstrations of feminine sexuality completely divorced from any attempt to appeal to men fly in the face of patriarchal attitudes. Even in progressive spaces, women owning their sexuality on their own terms elicits backlash.


Why do some people harbor such antipathy towards Hunter Schafer when her rise, activism, and defiance against pressures to conform seem admirable to mainstream society?

Fundamentally, Schafer’s unapologetic ownership over her body, career, and womanhood threatens rigid perspectives unable to reconcile her multiplicity beyond shallow stereotypes.

  • Her meteoric success as an inexperienced trans actress of color exposes barriers facing marginalized groups in Hollywood while challenging preconceived notions around “deserving” fame.
  • Her outspoken social justice advocacy, despite claims of imperfection, adds a prominent trans millennial voice to critical conversations on diversity, equity and inclusion.
  • Her gender fluid personal aesthetic paired with sexually-confident expressions of femininity expand standards of womanhood confined by many.

Rather than engage with nuanced examinations of her lived experiences, detractors rely upon reductive mischaracterizations and bad-faith assumptions that say more about their own limitations. Uninterested in evolving their perspectives, they instead deride Schafer as a threat for daring to transcend their biases.

Ultimately, while worthy of balanced criticism on legitimate grounds, backlash towards Schafer stems predominantly from objections not to any single action, but rather to her very right to exist proudly and freely as her authentic self.

Frequently Asked Questions

Has Hunter Schafer ever apologized for insensitive comments?

Yes, on multiple occasions Schafer has apologized and acknowledged harm caused by past statements generalized groups’ experiences. She has expressed regret over the pain prompted by her words while reaffirming her commitment to inclusiveness.

How has Schafer addressed accusations of tokenization or failing to honor trans pioneers?

Schafer has noted figures like Laverne Cox and Janet Mock as inspirations she stands on the shoulders of while citing epithets like “The First” as reductive and harmful. She strives to acknowledge those who came before her while making space for trans individuals with different goals to also thrive.

What are some examples of Schafer using her platform for activism beyond trans issues?

From climate change to reproductive rights to income inequality, Schafer utilizes her platform to champion various progressive causes. She participated in abortion rights marches, highlighted the harms of fast fashion on marginalized workers, and made films shining light on disparate policing impacts.

Has Schafer spoken about experiencing mental health issues or struggles due to her fame?

Yes, Schafer has been candid regarding her struggles with depression, anxiety, disordered eating and imposter syndrome. Despite the perception of overnight fame, she has noted the immense pressures and loneliness prompting reliance on therapy and medication at times to cope.

How does Schafer respond to accusations of performative wokeness or chasing clout?

While granting that no one is above self-interrogation, Schafer has sought to make plain the authenticity of her values gained from personal experiences with oppression and marginalization. She notes that true advocacy requires risk and sacrifice absent from merely performative gestures.

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