People at yet another university are demanding that their school cancel a Milo Yiannopoulos speech because it would be “dangerous,” and that’s exactly the kind of reaction that’s keeping Milo in his job.
Yiannopoulos was invited to speak at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee, and a student-faculty group called “Coalition Against the Ultra Right” wrote a letter demanding that the school call it off because his “ideologies are dangerous” and “promote violence,” according to an article in Campus Reform. A faculty group, “UWM Against Hate,” launched a petition demanding the same thing, explaining that they are “afraid for [their] students” should Milo be allowed to speak there.
Now, I’m personally not a huge fan of Yiannopoulos. It’s not that he enrages me; it’s more that I’d rather spend my time doing things other than getting offended or trying to figure out what he really believes versus what he says because it’s fun to say it. And although I’ve never cried over or felt threatened by his comments, you’d never hear me argue that he hasn’t said some things that could easily be described as “terrible.” But the fact is, the whole reason that Milo says “terrible things” is because he’s learned that saying “terrible things” is all he has to do in order to have a career.
Make no mistake: It’s not Milo’s fans who have given him his media-celebrity staying power, and the harder people try to stop him, the easier it gets for him to continue. Think about it. Yiannopoulos’s entire schtick is that he’s an advocate for “free speech” in a world where “free speech” is under attack, and the best way to keep this narrative going is to keep him from being free to speak. What’s more, the people who threaten violence against him — such as the DePaul University students who went so far as to rush the stage, grab his microphone, and threaten to punch him in the face during his speech in May — only manage to make the guy who once wrote that “birth control makes you a slut” seem like more of a sympathetic figure.