Milo Yiannopoulos Resigns from Breitbart after Scandal

Milo Yiannopoulos

Following the pedophilia scandal that broke over the weekend following his appointment as keynote speaker at CPAC 2017, Milo Yiannopoulos just resigned from his Breitbart position today. The resignation marks the third in a series of events following the illumination of previous interviews including the loss of his speaking position as well as his Simon & Schuster book deal.

Milo Yiannopoulos resignation statementIn a statement released a few moments ago, he said, “Breitbart News has stood by me when others caved.” He added, “I would be wrong to allow my poor choice of words to detract from my colleagues’ important reporting, so today I am resigning from Breitbart, effective immediately.”

The resignation offers a capstone to his ongoing statements regarding video clips released showing him not only defending adults having sex with boys, but other forms of pederasty and pedophilia.

Though he initially claimed the videos were deceptively edited, the full videos – the Joe Rogan interview in particular – offered even more damning evidence against him as he told stories of being at Hollywood parties and witnessing boys being drugged and taken advantage of. He didn’t want to be “indiscreet” in revealing the identities of those child molesters, however.

Today’s resignation follows speculation that Breitbart was making preparations to terminate Yiannopoulos’ employment. Some outlets reported that several Breitbart staffers were willing to quit if he wasn’t fired over the scandal, in fact. That appears to be unnecessary now.

It’s àpropos that the very thing that made his career – unrepentant ‘free speech’ – is the very thing that led to his ultimate downfall. Like most conservative and extremist free speech advocates, Yiannopoulos rode to fame touting the evil of political correctness all the while benefiting from it.

As Washington Post reporter Callum Borchers pointed out, “Milo Yiannopoulos claims to hate political correctness. He is about to feel the pain of living without its benefits.”

Borchers added:

Despite all of Yiannopoulos’s talk, the reality is that the Breitbart News editor has thrived on political correctness. He built his brand not by saying substantive things but by demanding that he be allowed to say whatever he wants — while exploiting the fear that nothing could be seen as more politically incorrect than appearing to deny his right to free speech.

That fear — the worry that shutting up Yiannopoulos will make you look like an enemy of the First Amendment — faded over the weekend when the Conservative Political Action Conference canceled a scheduled speech by the professional provocateur after remarks he made last year about sex involving adults and underage teens resurfaced online.

The thing about free speech most people forget is that it’s guaranteed against government intrusion – not against consequences. Free speech does not guarantee anyone a platform, a voice, or a right to an audience. It doesn’t protect against losing employment or status. It doesn’t offer shelter from labels or criticism.

The more poignant takeaway from this entire tragedy isn’t necessarily that he lost his cash cow by making these specific comments; rather, it’s that this specific issue is where most people drew a line. That line wasn’t achieved when he harassed women, persons of color, Muslims, immigrants, LGBTQ people (transgender men and women especially), or any of the other traditionally disenfranchised minorities he used as convenient props to propel himself to stardom.

When a majority of the conservative community – including Donald Trump – threw a collective tantrum over the cancellation of Yiannopoulos’s UC-Berkeley speech over safety concerns, they spoke of censorship and that free speech should not be silenced. Those same conservatives are mostly absent now as CPAC silenced his ability to use their platform to disseminate his message.

Not unsurprisingly, Yiannopoulos’s remaining supporters blame liberals for his current predicament. The accusation basically consists of arguing liberals waited until Yiannopoulos was popular enough for maximum damage and then released videos of him making the egregious remarks.

The New York Times noted:

A statement from Breitbart News on Tuesday applauded Mr. Yiannopoulos’s “bold voice,” adding — in words sure to inflame some liberals — that the provocateur “has sparked much-needed debate on important cultural topics confronting universities, the L.G.B.T.Q. community, the press, and the tech industry.”

A spokesman for Breitbart said that the site’s management accepted Mr. Yiannopoulos’s resignation on Tuesday morning.

Alex Marlow, the editor in chief of Breitbart, called Mr. Yiannopoulos’ comments about pedophilia “indefensible” and “appalling.” But Mr. Marlow, speaking on Breitbart’s daily radio show Tuesday, also defended Mr. Yiannopoulos, saying there was no evidence Mr. Yiannopoulos had acted as a sexual predator and that he had been a victim of a “coordinated hit” by liberal groups intent on hurting his ascent.

“There seems to be growing evidence that this was all coordinated to wait for a peak moment when Milo was red-hot,” Mr. Marlow said. “They sat on this story and they held it for maximum political damage.”

Yiannopoulos’ biggest defender – Ann Coulter – made similar remarks on Twitter. “Well, Milo learned HIS lesson. Pederasty acceptable only for refugees and illegals. Then libs will support you,” she said simultaneously blaming liberals as well as immigrants and refugees for the scandal rather than Yiannopoulos for actually making the statements.

Based in large part to this continued support from a based of mostly white, mostly conservative people who don’t mind casual misogyny, Islamophobia, transphobia and generalized hatred, Yiannopoulos has already posited that this won’t harm his career going forward.

“I don’t think this has done any harm for my profile,” he said today.

Time will tell if a man who not only promoted pederasty but also priests engaging in pedophilia can continue capturing the minds and hearts of conservative America.

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Tim Peacock is the Managing Editor and founder of Peacock Panache and has worked as a civil rights advocate for over twenty years. During that time he's worn several hats including leading on campus LGBT advocacy in the University of Missouri campus system, interning with the Colorado Civil Rights Division, and volunteering at advocacy organizations. You can learn more about him at his personal website.

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