17 December 2016

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Tell Colleges: Don't Let Milo Yiannopoulos Harass Your Students [Petition]

When failed tech entrepreneur and Breitbart editor Milo Yiannopoulos spoke at a Wisconsin university in December, he used the opportunity to harass a transgender woman. According to a local report, Yiannopoulos "named and showed a picture of the student to his audience, and accused the student of being a man trying to find his way into women's bathrooms." Yiannopoulos added "The way you know he's failed is I can still bang him."

Alt-Right's poster boy, Milo Yiannopoulos - image via Wikipedia
The following is an email I've received from Media Matters earlier on... as the subject of that email is Milo (I have written a post about the deluded Breitbart/alt-right's poster boy, quite a while ago), I definitely have no problem whatsoever sharing it on here.

Stay safe!

Loup Dargent

The Email:
Harassment is not a part of the marketplace of ideas. Campuses need to be places where ideas can be debated vigorously, and sometimes that debate will become uncomfortable or controversial. But when discussion devolves into outright harassment of students, it is time to draw a line.

When failed tech entrepreneur and Breitbart editor Milo Yiannopoulos spoke at a Wisconsin university in December, he used the opportunity to harass a transgender woman. According to a local report, Yiannopoulos "named and showed a picture of the student to his audience, and accused the student of being a man trying to find his way into women's bathrooms." Yiannopoulos added "The way you know he's failed is I can still bang him."1


Yiannopoulos is defined by his harassment. He is a champion of the "alt-right," a coalition of white supremacists and misogynists that have consistently used online platforms to organize harassment.

In October, the Anti-Defamation League found a drastic uptick in anti-Semitic tweets sent to journalists.2 A conservative writer connected them to the "alt-right" and Yiannopoulos personally.3 Twitter banned Yiannopoulos in July for what the organization described as "participating in or inciting targeted abuse of individuals."4 The ban was widely understood as a reaction to the harassment campaign Yiannopoulos led against African-American actress Leslie Jones.5 This approach can be traced back to "Gamergate," where conspiracy theorists engaged in sustained harassment of women, including directing threats of violence against them.6 Yiannopoulos was a key figure in that as well.7

>> Tell Colleges: Don't Let Milo Yiannopoulos Harass Your Students
Colleges are rightfully reluctant to ban speakers based on their viewpoint. But they should not shy from taking a stand against people with a lengthy track record of harassment, especially those who have demonstrated a willingness to target and harass students.

Campuses have a simple way to prevent Yiannopoulos from harassing students on campus: They should require him to contractually agree to avoid such behavior before they permit him to speak on campus. If Yiannopoulos is truly interested in participating in an exchange of ideas, he should have no trouble agreeing to this. Campuses would also be doing their due diligence to protect their status as an open forum.

It's time to draw a line, and we need you to add your voice.

Erin Fitzgerald
LGBT Program Director, Media Matters

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[1] Herzog, Karen. (2016, December 15). Breitbart writer targets transgender UWM student Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel.
[2] ADL's Task Force on Harassment and Journalism. (2016, October 19). ADL Report: Anti-Semitic Targeting Of Journalists During The 2016 Presidential Campaign Anti-Defamation League.
[3] Pesca, Mike. (2016, November 23). The Alt-Right Is Using Trump Slate.
[4] Ohlheiser, Abby. (2016, July 21). Just how offensive did Milo Yiannopoulos have to be to get banned from Twitter? The Washington Post.
[5] Singal, Jesse. (2016, November 4). Twitter Exile Has Not Been Good for Milo’s Brand New York.
[6] Jeong, Sarah. (2016, December 14). If we took ‘Gamergate’ harassment seriously, ‘Pizzagate’ might never have happened The Washington Post.
[7] Biddle, Sam. (2014, October 20). The D-List Right-Wingers Who've Turned Gamergate Into Their Loser Army Gawker.