In some ways, after yesterday’s events, Milo Yiannopoulos has become even more well known to the viewers of mainstream media. There are many people in the UK outside of University campuses who have no idea about who he is, but from yesterday in particular that changed.
Unfortunately, it changed for the worst for the former editor of media firebrand, Breitbart News. The mainstream media in typical fashion reports what is immediately in front of it and if the story is good enough to cause a media storm on face value, they don’t tend to waste time digging deeper.
Helpful titles from organisations such as Huffington Post include “Breitbart’s Milo Yiannopoulos resigns following outrage over his past comments about pedophilia” with the opening paragraph reading: “Milo Yiannopoulos, the incendiary writer… resigned… after a video of him endorsing pedophilia resurfaced online over the weekend.” This description to anyone involved in the topic, is simply untrue.
Milo hits it on the nose when answering questions regarding the sincerity of the media onslaught when he says:
“This is a cynical media witch hunt by people who do not care about children. They care about destroying me.”
In terms of what I have witnessed, following Yiannopoulos over the last 2 years, this is exactly what this “cynical media” has been trying to do with their reporting on him ever since he became well known in alt-right circles. However, this goes to show that with controversial figures such as Milo, when they have reached a peak in their popularity, the old saying “the bigger they are, the harder they fall” comes to mind.
And Milo is right to admit that his comments were wrong and they did lead people who do not know him to believe he was endorsing pedophilia, with no help from the media. As Milo puts it, the media “gleefully” reported this story and moreover the editors which hit the publish button on the subsequent articles knew for a fact the story wasn’t true. The material, out of context, was there to be exploited and entice the same headline grabbing lefties that came to protest his press conference.
The quotes as usual were ripped out of context from the longer clip, where Milo does elaborate to say things like the age of consent is “about right”, yet this is not included. In fact Milo’s comments that had surfaced from a podcast a year ago were mainly about himself and his own experiences as a victim of child sexual abuse.
Opening his press conference yesterday, Milo made these remarks:
“I would like to restate my disgust at adults who sexually abuse minors. I am horrified by pedophilia and I have devoted large portions of my career as a journalist to exposing child abusers. I’ve outed three of them, in fact — three more than most of my critics.”
He then goes on to describe his experience and the wider context which was implied:
“I do not believe sex with 13-year-olds is okay. When I mentioned the number 13, I was talking about myself, and the age I lost my own virginity.”
This context regrettably missed from the original clips for one of America’s greatest advocates of free speech.
In response to speculation featured in my previous article, Milo has resigned from Breitbart citing he did not want this incident to detract from the work of the outlet, or that of his former colleagues working there:
“I would be wrong to allow my poor choice of words to detract from my colleagues’ important reporting, which is why today I am resigning from Breitbart, effective immediately. This decision is mine alone.”
Regarding his book ‘Dangerous’, it’s going ahead as planned, with Milo having this to say:
“The book will come out this year as planned. I will be donating 10 per cent of my royalties to child sex abuse charities.”
A new era for Yiannopoulos starts today, as a free-lance provocateur with an independent and more varied following than Breitbart News itself. We are confident that Milo will continue to be successful in his work creating awareness of 1st amendment rights violations throughout the US, and continue to tour college campuses ensuring that freedom of speech has a vocal proponent. In the UK, our campuses are beginning to become as restrictive as those in the US and we desperately need a UK based advocate of the same universal rights everyone should be afforded.
The most exciting part of Milo’s new personal venture however was this:
“I will be announcing a new, independently-funded media venture of my own and a live tour in the coming weeks.”
Something the MildlyRight blog would wholeheartedly endorse as so many right wing writers and bloggers are not given the same opportunities to write freely on issues that concern them online, as opposed to the plethora of left wing platforms out there. I know Milo will centre this new media venture on those people, blogs like this one, giving them a wider voice.
Milo signs off his press conference with this:
“Don’t think for a moment that this will stop me being as offensive, provocative and outrageously funny as I want on any subject I want.”
– It’s good to hear!