Who is Manny MUA? Joe Biden, Anthony Fauci joining YouTuber to push vaccine ‘last thing’ baffled Internet expected
The White House is now seeking the help of YouTube content creators for vaccine messaging. President Joe Biden and Anthony Fauci, physician-scientist and immunologist who serves as the director of the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the chief medical advisor to the president, appeared in new videos released on Monday, May 24, that were part of a virtual town hall in an effort to reach young audiences and curb vaccine hesitancy.
The White House sees its collaboration with YouTube influencers as an opportunity to meet its July 4 deadline for “getting the nation closer to normal”. Among the many YouTube stars who are part of this project is Manny MUA.
Who is Manny MUA?
Manuel Gutierrez Jr, known professionally as Manny MUA, is a make-up artist, YouTuber, entrepreneur, and beauty blogger. Gutierrez told Yahoo News that people ages 18-24 and 25-30 make up the bulk of his audience. He said that he felt he had a social responsibility to his viewers, even though his channel primarily focused on beauty. “Just because I’m a beauty guru who loves to play with makeup doesn’t mean I don’t want to use my platform to help in other areas if I can,” Gutierrez said.
Gutierrez, who has more than 4.8 million followers on YouTube, shared the video on the platform with the text: “HEY GUYS THIS IS NOT A DRILL!!!!! I am so shook that I had the opportunity to speak with president biden and dr fauci! thank you to my team and to the white house for making this happen! I was shakingggg yall literally shaking but I think it turned out pretty good hahah.”
In the video, he asked President Biden about the rumors of a vaccine passport needed to travel or to go to concerts. “Federally, we are not going to have any mandate, and we don’t keep records, federally, of people who have gotten the vaccine,” President Biden said. He added that the rumor of vaccine passports “just plays into paranoia in some people, in particular young people. That is just not the case.”
Gutierrez also asked President Biden that if he were stranded on a desert island, and he could only bring one skincare product, what would it be? “I happen to be Irish, and I think my wife before I headed to the island would tell me, you better bring some sunscreen,” President Biden said.
Gutierrez was raised in what he calls a "liberal Mormon" household in Southern California. Speaking to Marie Claire in 2016, he said that he quickly learned to hide his interest in beauty. "I wanted to play with eyeliner and makeup while other boys were playing with GI Joes," he said. "So it was kind of tough for me because I didn't really understand why I wanted to play with the 'girl' things rather than the 'boy' things."
By his late teens, he said that he had taken to locking himself in his mother's room to experiment with her makeup. When he began documenting his makeup on Instagram, he blocked all of his family in an effort to protect himself and isolate his interests.
But when his family and church learned of his online presence, his parents approached him with worry for his career: "They were just like, 'If you're doing this makeup online, how do you feel like medical schools are going to be? Do you think they're going to accept you into medical school?' They didn't understand then that it was my creative freedom." He said that he stopped going to church after being outed as gay by his parents.
Many online were confused about this collaboration between a beauty vlogger and the US President. It was, per many, an unlikely pairing. That a makeup YouTube star would question the US President and Dr Fauci about the vaccine seemed like an absurd notion to the masses.
“Manny MUA collabed with Joe Biden?? That was not on my 2021 Bingo Card,” said a Twitter user. “it’s 2021 and manny mua collabed with biden i don’t think we are on the right timeline,” wrote another Twitter user. One Twitter user commented, “Joe Biden and Manny Mua collab video is the absolute last thing I expected to see on this monday morning.” One Twitter user wrote, "Never expected Manny mua and Joe Biden to do a whole collab."
Manny MUA collabed with Joe Biden??— Cass (@cassthepearl) May 24, 2021
That was not on my 2021 Bingo Card pic.twitter.com/Qm9g7idThg
it’s 2021 and manny mua collabed with biden i don’t think we are on the right timeline pic.twitter.com/CjARAjg7YK— hickey (@HickeyShamer) May 24, 2021
Joe Biden and Manny Mua collab video is the absolute last thing I expected to see on this monday morning https://t.co/KUASw9YUur— ryan dandelion (@ryrydandelion) May 24, 2021
Never expected Manny mua and Joe Biden to do a whole collab.... pic.twitter.com/PboiouumM3— Lucky ♡ (@luckyybom) May 24, 2021