By Ben Jackson
As the modern landscape of political news and journalism continues to trend towards entertainers as sources for news and expert opinion, the right has been more than a little disadvantaged by people such as Stephen Colbert, John Stewart, and other left-leaning news funny-men of that ilk. Milo Yiannopoulos saw a void in the market for a similar such entertainer catering instead to a right-leaning demographic audience.
The self-styled “dangerous faggot” carved out his own audience and format by choosing to forgo an attempt at mirroring the entertaining talk-show format on Fox News, or an independent network, and decided instead to pioneer an original idea by making a name for himself by way of a conservative college campus speech tour punctuated by his unique brand of mischievous fun and humor. he provocatively and famously called this endeavour the “Dangerous Faggot Tour,” announcing on arrival the intended dual purposes of subverting oppressive politically correct language policing, and counteracting the tendency of college campuses to be havens for leftist bias and rhetoric.
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Nicknaming himself and his tour in this way appears superficially to be provocative, and perhaps offensive to some as well, but it also has a deeper significance of protesting the rather homophobic and racist notion that racial and sexual minorities owe their allegiance to the Democratic Party. Milo is “dangerous” in that he launches an all-out assault on a cherished pillar of the American Left: identity politics.
Many people supposed that the recent scandals regarding unearthed irresponsible statements made by Yiannopoulos about his own sexual abuse as a child, and his apparent lackadaisical attitude about it would demonize him enough to make him unpalatable to new audiences, and to lose him the support of the conservative movements for whom he has been both golden boy and champion since the Trump presidential campaign. The immediate fallout from the scandal brought with it many and severe setbacks for the provocateur, and was widely regarded as the end of his career for all intents and purposes. This despite the fact that his statements reflected the typical attitudinal patterns of sexual abuse victims, and as such should never have been a cause to his discredit in the first place.
Yiannopoulos voluntarily stepped down as senior editor at Breitbart in order to spare his colleagues any guilt by association. Furthermore, he had inked a lucrative book deal with the publishers Simon And Schuster, which they subsequently revoked. The book deal had been symbolic of Yiannopoulos’ breakthrough into mainstream celebrity and the pinnacle of his commercial success. These consequences were in some ways perplexing, as the statements in question were autobiographical, and cannot in good conscience be construed as reflecting his general opinion about the age of sexual maturity. Furthermore, other statements taken from the same podcast recordings as the supposed smoking gun reaffirm a contrary, and more conventional opinion about the issue.
A few months and twelve million dollars in fundraising later, Milo has reemerged to unveil a multiple-pronged attack plan for propelling himself back into action and cultural relevancy. He intends to sue original publisher Simon and Schuster, a move which is not only a symbolic gesture of his own moral victory, but would also set the precedent that it does not behoove publishers to discriminate because of political affiliation. This move comes at the same time as his announcement to self-publish the same book, and to publish a great deal of other books by other conservative and libertarian writers similarly marginalized.
Rather than stopping him, Simon and Schuster have motivated him into becoming their competitor and rival. He also intends to double down on his bread and butter, and what has brought him the most notoriety thus far, which is of course his college campus lectures. This time he will be calling his upcoming tour “Troll Academy”, in order to highlight the need for dissent to counteract the overwhelmingly leftist and/or Marxist preferences of the vast majority of college faculty and staff nationwide.
Yiannopoulos represents a focal point in the cultural war in North America between lovers of freedom— particularly freedom of speech at the moment— and lovers of politically correct modes of thought control and language policing.
With the violent and dangerous behavior of leftist groups such as Black Lives Matter and Antifa, and with the looming threat that they pose to freedom of speech in the form of violently enforced censorship, America needs a champion for liberty.
And so, the “dangerous faggot” has set aside his previous moniker and has appointed himself instead “The Queen of Free Speech.” Long may he reign. Or perhaps I should say “she”. In any case, the coming months are crucial and observing whether Milo’s new projects sink or swim will be a good litmus test for whether the nation is ready for conservative and libertarian sympathizers as entertainers as well as informers.
Ben Jackson is a dual Colombian-American citizen who was born in Bogota and grew up in the United States. He graduated from Buffalo State College in 2011 with a degree in Foreign Language Education. He is currently pursuing a master’s degree in Latin American Literature at the Universidad Javeriana in Bogota. In his free time he enjoys writing poetry and practicing brazilian jiu jitsu.