The ad, entitled “Dream Big,” features McGregor giving a motivational speech as the streets of Dublin transform into Los Angeles around him. “Keep proving others wrong,” he says. “If your dream doesn’t scare you, then it’s not big enough.”
Seems like a pretty worthwhile message from the fighter, but RTE refuses to show it, saying “it might encourage young people to drink alcohol.”
For what it’s worth, McGregor isn’t even shown drinking beer in the ad. Budweiser has defended the commercial, saying it “was pre-approved by an advertising vetting service.”
It’s the latest interesting shift in McGregor’s Irish popularity to happen over the past several months. When he beat Jose Aldo to win the UFC featherweight belt, Irish officials refused to organize homecoming celebrations until an outcry from the public forced them to change their minds.
Many press outlets still haven’t settled on whether the cocky fighter is a national treasure or a disgrace. But if there’s one thing the old folks seem to understand, it’s that the young folk really like him. So much that they’ve banned this relatively benign Budweiser commercial.
Young Irish across the country responded by shrugging and continuing to watch everything on the internet like they have for the past ten years.