Nikita Dragun slammed for using dead trans women to promote herself
Influencer Nikita Dragun is facing overwhelming backlash for promoting her new song “DICK” by stamping the word “DICK” on the faces of various trans women, including the late Marsha P. Johnson and SOPHIE.
Dragun dropped the video to his Instagram and Twitter on Thursday, and has since been inundated with responses from people who condemned many of the issues in the video.
People took to social media to call Dragun for putting the word “DICK” on the faces of late trans icons and for calling themselves the “first trans pop star” – two issues users said didn’t respect not the legacy of trans women like Johnson and SOPHIE.
Some had an issue with Dragun calling herself “The First Trans Pop Star” because the statement erases the work of various trans artists who have been working for years. People have referred to the late SOPHIE and Kim Petras as established trans pop stars.
“THE COMPLETE AUDACITY OF NIKITA DRAGUN CALLED” THE FIRST POPSTAR TRANS “, wrote a user on Twitter.
Others have spoken out against placing the word “bite” on Johnson’s and SOPHIE’s faces.
“Writing ‘DICK’ on the faces of trans women in history just to promote your music is very harmful” noted a user on TikTok. “Especially considering that trans women are hurt in real life because they present themselves as trans and do not have the resources to stay safe in these situations.”
On Thursday, Dragun mocked those who criticized the video, saying it didn’t actually release a song.
“I did DICK just to do stunts in my DICK dress,” she wrote.
She then doubled down, defending her song and claiming the backlash “sexualized trans women” afterwards. people claimed she was trying to “expose” men in her MDs.
She didn’t address specific criticisms of writing “DICK” on Johnson and SOPHIE’s faces or of claiming she was the first trans pop star.
Until Friday afternoon, her name on Twitter was “Nikita Dragun, First Trans Popstar.” But by the end of the afternoon, she had changed it to Venus Xtravaganza, the harlem trans ballroom icon and Star of Paris is burning who was murdered at the age of 23 in December 1988.
It is not known why Dragun chose to change his name on Twitter to that of Xtravaganza. His team did not respond to the Daily Dot’s request for additional information.
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* First published: Sep 18, 2021, 10:59 a.m. CDT
Samira Sadeque is a New York-based reporter who discusses immigration, sexual violence, and mental health, and will sometimes write about memes and dinosaurs as well. His work also appears in Reuters, NPR and NBC, among other publications. She graduated from Columbia Journalism School and her work was nominated for the SAJA Awards. Follow: @Samideque