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Yes, Milo Should Be Allowed to Speak on College Campuses (But That Does Not Mean You Should Invite Him) [with Update]

A conservative UCLA Professor explains why the UCLA College Republicans should rescind their invitation to a vile controversialist.

Much of the debate about speech on campus focuses on whether certain speakers should be allowed to speak on college campuses. Too little considers what sorts of speakers conservative and libertarian groups should invite to campus if they want to further reasoned discourse and expose their communities to a wider range of political viewpoints.

The College Republican chapter at UCLA -- the Bruin Republicans -- recently decided to invite noted controversialist Milo Yiannopoulos to speak at a campus event. Apparently the group believes Milo will draw a crowd and serve as an effective fundraiser.

Professor Gabriel Rossman, one of the few open conservatives on the UCLA faculty, takes exception to this invitation. In an open letter published by The Weekly Standard he urges the Bruin Republicans to reconsider. The whole thing is worth a read. Here is a taste:

The most important reason not to host such a talk is that it is evil on the merits. Your conscience should tell you that you never want anything to do with someone whose entire career is not reasoned argument, but shock jock performance art. In the 1980s conservatives made fun of "artists" who defecated on stage for the purpose of upsetting conservatives. Now apparently, conservatives are willing to embrace a man who says despicable things for the purpose of "triggering snowflakes." The change in performance art from the fecal era to the present is yet another sign that no matter how low civilization goes, there is still room for further decline.

I want to be clear that my point here is not that some people will be offended, but that the speaker is purely malicious.

Many speakers and many speeches will offend people, especially given the sense among many on the campus left that they are entitled to complete isolation from ideas with which they disagree.

This is different. . . .

As Professor Rossman goes on to explain, if the aim of hosting outside speakers is "to spread conservative ideas," inviting someone like Milo Yiannopoulos will likely do more harm than good. Hosting a talk "by someone whose sole recommendation is that his offensiveness to others is his big idea" is no way to convince others to take conservative ideas seriously. It is, however, an awfully effective way to convince others that your organization is indifferent to racism, sexism, anti-semitism, and (in Milo's case) pedophlia.[*]

Professor Rossman's letter concludes:

I am a strong believer in freedom of political speech. However, there is a distinction between tolerating speech and sponsoring speech. Neither I, nor you, nor Chancellor Block have the right to say that Milo Yiannopoulos can not give a speech on campus.

But neither does that mean that I, nor you, nor Chancellor Block needs to actively invite him and actively promote his childish provocations. If he wants to stand on Bruin Walk ranting with the other creeps and lunatics, he can do so. I believe people have the right to do all sorts of things in the privacy of their own homes, but that doesn't mean that I would invite them to do them in my living room for an audience of me and my dinner guests.

If you go through with hosting Yiannopoulos, I will vociferously support your right to do so—and the duty of the UCPD to use force if necessary to maintain order and prevent a heckler's veto. However, I must just as vehemently and publicly disagree with your decision to host him.

Amen.

[*] UPDATE: Milo Yiannopoulos has e-mailed Reason noting his objection to the suggestion that observers might conclude that an organization that invites him to speak is "indifferent to . . . pedophilia." Any such suggestion, Milo claims, would be "grotesque and wrong."

I will take Mr. Yiannopoulos at his word that he objects to pedophilia and that any conclusions to the contrary are based upon a misunderstanding of his comments in a controversial video. In the past, he has attributed this misunderstanding to "sloppy phrasing," a failure to appreciate "British sarcasm," and "deceptive editing." Whatever the reason, I think it is indisputable that many interpreted his comments as endorsing pederasty if not also exhibiting a degree of indifference to pedophilia, notwithstanding his subsequent protestations to the contrary. As a consequence, inviting Mr. Yiannopoulos to speak does pose the risk of "convinc[ing] others that your organization is indifferent to . . . pedophilia." [The e-mail from Mr. Yiannopoulos did not object to any suggestion that inviting him might suggest an indifference to racism, sexism, or anti-semitism.]

For those who are interested, a video and transcript of the relevant remarks are available here. A transcript of Mr. Yiannopoulos's prior comments on the controversy is available here.

SECOND UPDATE: The UCLA Bruins have rescinded their invitation to Milo Yiannopoulos. Here's additional coverage from the Daily Bruin and the LA Times.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • jdgalt1||

    Fuck that. If the other side gets to employ trolls -- and it does, plenty! -- we're both entitled and need to do it too.

    If you're going to object to a political rally tactic, start by exposing and shaming the paid fake demonstrators that BLM, and before them the Occupy movement, have always used at their events.

  • Sarcastr0||

    Just because they get you angry doesn't mean they're trolls.

    I am impressed you've stopped caring even about the appearance of having any policy goals, and are just wallowing in spite!

  • JesseAz||

    You have often said you enjoy trolling through presupposed sarcasm. Youve even praised the work of the bad AK. Does this statement now mean you don't care about policy at all and are wallowing in spite?

  • Sarcastr0||

    Lets get our definitions clear.

    IMO, trolling is not having a demeanor some people don't like (a demeanor I have largely dropped in my old age, BTW) - it's acting and saying things with the primary purpose of making people angry.

    I find people who call me a troll seem to call just about anyone who doesn't agree with their politics a troll.

  • dontquestionit||

    Trolling is seeking a reaction without concern for the subject. Going on the Star Trek message site and writing how Lance Skywalker and Chowbachus are lousy characters is trolling. Trolls don't care what they say or write. They don't believe it.

    People who believe the things they say or write would probably be more provocateurs or agitators than "trolls."

  • TwelveInchPianist||

    "Just because they get you angry doesn't mean they're trolls."

    That's certainly correct. And it works both ways. Just because Milo makes people angry doesn't make him a troll. And what if he doesn't make you angry? What if you find him entertaining and thought provoking? Should you not invite him you your school because some professor says you shouldn't enjoy him?

  • Sarcastr0||

    I agree. Except that it's not just because he makes people angry, it's because he admits that he says things and does stuff specifically in order to get people angry.

    Trolling is largely about intent.
    A few people are so broken that they manage to troll without meaning it, but Milo is not one of those.

  • TwelveInchPianist||

    Do you apply the same standard to people who say things strongly critical of people you strongly disagree with, or even consider deplorable? There's no shortage of people on the internet being deliberately uncivil to people who they consider racists, or Nazis, or trolls, but who think it's OK because of the nature of their targets.

  • Nige||

    Wouldn't that depend on whether they actually were Nazis and racists? Seems like an important distinction.

  • Sarcastr0||

    Actually were N/r, or just want people to think they're N/r and freak out about it.

    Ironic N/r is a thing. Though you do that enough you seem to become genuine.
    People are strange.

  • TwelveInchPianist||

    Why? If you get to say that it's OK to troll nazis and racists, why don't Milo and the CR's get to say that it's OK to troll SJW's? Or Marxists? Or Socialists?

  • Nige||

    It's the difference between having a moral compass and not having a moral compass and remaining studiously amoral because you can't bring yourself to side with the sort of people who don't like Nazis or racists, I suppose.

  • TwelveInchPianist||

    Everybody thinks that they have a moral compass. And that people who disagree with them don't.

  • Nige||

    Fair enough, actually. However I'm not defending Milo on the carefully selected grounds that targeting 'SJWs' and targeting racists and Nazis must be roughly equivalent, morally.

  • Nige||

    No the things he says and does make him a troll, not the way people react.

  • Dilan Esper||

    "Fuck that. If the other side gets to employ trolls -- and it does, plenty! -- we're both entitled and need to do it too."

    If the other side shoots itself in the foot with automatic weapons, we're both entitled and need to do it too!

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Perhaps their aim in inviting him is simply making some money for the org, while demonstrating that 'liberals' are censors who turn violent at the drop of a hat?

    Then they can spend the money bringing in a few speakers who provide more light than heat.

  • apedad||

    And I thought that you were a 'process is as important as results' kinda guy.

    Guess it just shows that when you're a pub, there's only one way to go and that's off the deep end.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Hey, when I was in college our SF club ran a double feature fund raiser movie, Galaxina and Rocky Horror Picture Show. Really raked in the dough. Paid for bringing a big name SFI writer to speak on campus.

    Should we have run Fritz Lang's Metropolis, instead, as a matter of principle? I'm sure a couple dozen people would have bought tickets.

    I'm not a big fan of Milo, and wouldn't trouble myself to see him if he were speaking locally, but I'm not censorious, either. Let a thousand flowers bloom, and all that.

  • Dilan Esper||

    Brett, Milo is not the equivalent of the Rocky Horror Picture Show.

    Do you think it would have been OK to have the fund raiser movie by "Deep Throat"? How about "Triumph of the Will"?

    The problem here is that you are using the language that you would use to describe the free speech rights of an average liberal speaker that you disagree with ("I'm not a big fan of John Kerry, and wouldn't trouble myself to see him, but I'm not censorious either.") to describe a bigoted extremist who doesn't really traffic in any ideas, only provocations.

  • JesseAz||

    If you are worried about movies like deep throat being shown, you haven't been paying attention to some of the liberal workshops this year.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Yup, he's totally like Rocky Horror Picture Show. Minus the horrible cleanup in the theater afterwards.

  • PoxOnBothYourHouses||

    Dilan Esper: "Do you think it would have been OK to have the fund raiser movie by "Deep Throat"? How about "Triumph of the Will"?"

    Oh my. I saw both of them on campus -- the former run as a successful test of anti-porn laws -- in the 1960s and 1970s (also "Behind the Green Door"). As I recall they turned out fairly well. For what it's worth, I'm pretty sure you couldn't show the sex ones today without facing demonstrations.

    The issue, though, concerns the degree to which a side takes a "high road" approach in a time of great partisan divide, and I want to focus on actual human beings. I'm not at all sure how much of a loss it would be to have Milo Y. do his performance "art." It would at least show the middle-road students (there are a lot of them) that the opposition was still around.

    Whereas if you brought in a truly respectable and soft-spoken person like, say, Charles Murray, (a) he would largely fly under the radar of the middle, (b) he could be -- and has been -- physically attacked /anyway/, and (c) you'll /still/ be attacked by the SPLC for hosting a supposed "white supremacist."

  • jdgalt1||

    If so-called liberals, or anybody else, can be provoked that easily into behaving as thugs and terrorists, it is in the public interest to provoke them to do so at predictable times and places so that they can be put away.

    Of course, you have to have police who are willing to do their jobs, which is why this strategy didn't work in Berkeley.

  • mad_kalak||

    To be fair, even if Milo is an expert provocateur, he does have substance to what he says. Furthermore, even the most "respectable" conservatives speakers still provoke outbursts from the campus left, like Ben Shapiro or even a "classical liberal" like Jordan Peterson.

  • Bob from Ohio||

    Brown students tried to stop Guy Benson yesterday. Benson is basically the anti-Milo.

  • Sarcastr0||

    Ben Shapiro flirts with white supremacy a bit more than you might want if you're going to put him forth as the 'respectable' conservative speaker.

    Why not choose instead one of the fine folks at the Conspiracy? Or that guy who runs FIRE? I don't know this Peterson guy.

  • mad_kalak||

    Ben Shapiro is about a mainline conservative as you can get. He is has always said that ideology matters more than race. The closest he ever gets to ethno-natinalism or racism is his defense of Israel.
    Jordan Peterson is a Prof at the U. of Toronto who has been in the public eye since about 2015 or so, when he was refusing to comply with a Canadian law that would mandate that you use a trans person's pronoun of choice or pay a fine. I don't recall if the law passed. He has since become famous for his lectures, and is now getting profiled in major new publications. He has a #1 book on Amazon.

    Here is a decent profile of him at the Atlantic, and the most viewed and memed youtube video is an interview with Channel 4, easy to find.

  • Sarcastr0||

    Shapiro is alt right. He's Breitbart and TruthRevolt. If you want to call those mainstream conservative...I won't stop you.

    I read the wiki on Peterson; seems anodyne enough. But of course I want to see what the liberals say he says, and then check to see if he said it and in what context etc. etc.

  • Careless||

    Why do you think he's alt-right?

  • mad_kalak||

    If you want to call Shapiro alt-right, go ahead, but the actual alt-right, while they respect his debate skills, just view him (at best) as a fellow traveler, but more often than not and as the anti-semitic insult of your choice. Makes me wonder what you define as alt-right.

    Anyway, the Atlantic profile piece was praised by the Peterson fan groups as fairly even handed. And if you consider the Atlantic conservative, well, then I don't know what to say. JBP, as his fans call him, is most often gone after by liberals for comments, taken out of context, for an interview he did with the feminist Camille Pagila where he said (and I'm paraphrasing), that men don't know how to deal with crazy women. Relevant interview portion is here, starting at minute 13:00 - : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9euZXgyYixs

  • Matt L||

    Peterson isn't the worst of the worst, by far. But his interpretation of Bill C-16 (the law he objected to), was utter nonsense. The bill didn't do half of what he claimed it would do. So he was either ignorant of the law (while managing to get a lot of press ranting about it), or he was deliberately misrepresenting it to further his own agenda. Neither option makes him someone worthy of any respect.

  • JesseAz||

    Your dishonesty is stunning.

  • Rigelsen||

    "Shapiro is alt right."

    Your perfidy is stunning.

  • Sarcastr0||

    https://www.haaretz.com /opinion/.premium -ben-shapiro-at-berkeley- another-step-legitimizing- americas-alt-right -1.5451182

    https://www.dailywire.com/news/8638/ what-alt-right-ben-shapiro

    He apparently has issues with some within the movement, but his positions on race realism and are alt right as much as you can define a philosophy behind the alt right.
    ====================
    I do like how people think being associated with the Alt Right is a horrid insult.

    Also perfidity is a cool word.

  • Nige||

    Perfidious Sarcastrion.

  • Sarcastr0||

    Nice!

  • David Nieporent||

    I don't have a subscription to Haaretz so I can't see the first story you posted, but I don't see how finding an editorial calling him a member of the alt-right makes him one. The second link involves Shapiro explaining why he's an antagonist of the alt-right, so...?

  • jdgalt1||

    Shapiro hates the alt-right. They are trying to drive him out of the conservative movement for not supporting Trump.

  • TwelveInchPianist||

    "I don't know this Peterson guy."

    So you're saying that Jordan Peterson's existence should be banished from memory?

  • Sarcastr0||

    I'm saying the damnatio memoriae on JP...may have already happened!

  • mad_kalak||

    Good One! I doubt Sarcast0 has seen the Cathy Newman memes or watched the full Channel 4 interview.

  • JesseAz||

    Wow. That amazing pride of dishonesty you love is rearing bright and proud in this post. Shapiro, a Jew, who has been the top target of white supremacists per the FBI, is flirting back with them? Do you even think through your posts? Of this isn't proof that you have no logical response to a conservative argument and depend on attacks against their morality, I don't know what is.

    The guy wears a damn yalmuke all day. He is devout. Just wow.

  • Sarcastr0||

    The alt right isn't just anti-Semitism. It isn't even essentially ant-Semitism - that's the Neo-Nazis who I understand do not care for the alt-right.

    Folks that monitor the alt right put him in the set of alt right personalities.

    Read my links above.

  • mad_kalak||

    I think the key comment you make is "folks that monitor the alt right". The people who self identify as alt-right do not consider Shapiro alt-right, if indeed there was a membership card, he'd never be issued one, while ironically I bet Milo would be. Essentially, though, the problem you step into is that you have the enemies of the movement defining what it is for themselves as it furthers their own ideological goals, when the movement itself is a loose conglomeration of thinkers and activists. They monitors might be a little self interested in making the problem (if you assume the alt-right is a problem) is bigger than it is, in order to justify your own existence as a monitor. In short, don't ever expect the American Society of Engineers to ever give America an infrastructure grade above a C+.

  • Nige||

    guess this mindset explains why people on the right shrug when Nazis go marching but have spasmodic conniptions about the mythical power and reach of antifa.

  • mad_kalak||

    I'm old enough to remember when it was the left that defended a Neo-Nazi's right to march, and the right that was trying to stop anti-American protests. But seeing at this post is about leftists actually shutting down free speech events, and antifa did actually commit crimes during the inauguration of Trump, and antifa is just a continuance of the groups and mentality that is responsible for things such as the Seattle WTO riots, I suppose so.

  • MonitorsMost||

    @Sarcastr0

    1) Despite Rev.'s protestations to the contrary (often laced with racist and sexist non-sequiturs), the Conspiracy leans heavily libertarian which is often at odds with conservatives and whatever Republicans are now a days.

    2) UCLA has Eugene all the time.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    The Conspiracy describes its aim as promoting movement conservatism. Not surprisingly, it is roughly as libertarian as the average liberal blog. Much like the Federalist Society, which tends to occupy the same portion of the ideological continuum as does the Conspiracy.

  • ragnar_rahl||

    Now I'm curious. It was one thing when you were making the mere assertion that it was a "movement conservative" blog-- subjective as all hell. But "describes its aim as promoting movement conservative?" That's an objective claim, do you have objective evidence?

  • KevinP||

    I disagree with Prof. Adler. Milo has plenty of substance and it is worth having a listen to him.

  • regexp||

    I can't tell if you are serious or not. But if you are it just demonstrates how far conservatism has fallen in this country.

  • OtisAH||

    A cynical person might suggest it hasn't really fallen at all.

  • JesseAz||

    How many Milo speeches or books have you actually read regexp? Or is this one of your proud proclamations out of ignorance? Milo says crazy things, I don't even like him, but he has made salient points at times. He's no crazier that the left love children like assata Shakur.

  • David Nieporent||

    Um, how many Milo books have you actually read? (Hint: there's only been one, unless you count some plagiarized poetry thing.) And that only one was the one that was so awful that even S&S's conservative publishing imprint dropped it, and the proofed manuscript draft was filed with the court. Having reviewed the proofs, it's unclear whether the writing or the content was more terrible.

  • Nige||

    Haha 'books.'

  • MonitorsMost||

    Yiannopoulos is like Michael Savage or Cenk Yuger. They occasionally make an interesting point. This does not stop them from being generally insane.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Few enough people can be relied upon to make an occasional interesting point, that you can't afford to lose any for a trivial reason like being crazy.

  • Nige||

    And this is how the right-wing became the nature reserve for truly appalling people.

  • TwelveInchPianist||

    I guess when you don't have a argument, you just call people appalling.

  • JesseAz||

    Pretty standard from the VC regulars who came here from the post. They even call Jewish people white supremacists if they dare be conservative.

  • Nige||

    I guess when you're defending appalling people you'll pretend there's something wrong with calling appalling people appalling. Hence Trump, I guess.

  • aluchko||

    Does this include the articles where he secretly collaborates with Neo-Nazis and white supremacists to further their message?

    I'm actually astounded that the alt-right hasn't dropped Milo down the memory hole. It's one thing to claim that racist stances aren't actually racist. But when someone maintains their place in the movement after getting caught collaborating with Neo-Nazis it makes it pretty tough to keep up the pretense.

  • Careless||

    ITT aluchko taught us that "secretly collaborating with" means openly interviewing people (to the extent that you're quoting their emails to you in the article) before you write your story on what they believe and checking to make sure you're not misrepresenting them.

    How vile. (ok, I didn't read the whole thing. It's about 15 times longer than it probably should be, 9000 words, and mostly not even on the topic you're trying to bring up)

    Ok, I actually did finish skimming it. Here's the entire quote relevant to the claim (again, a 9000 word article)

    "On May 1, Yiannopoulos emailed Saucier asking for readings related to class-based affirmative action; Saucier responded with a half dozen links on the subject, which American Renaissance often covers. On May 3, Saucier sent Yiannopoulos an email titled "Article idea": "How trolls could win the general for Trump." Yiannopoulos forwarded the email to Bokhari and wrote, "Drop what you're doing and draft this for me.""

    Unfortunately, Milo didn't, AFAICT, write anything on the subject in Breitbart for the rest of 2016, so I guess that wouldn't count as furthering white supremacist ideas. Huh.

  • aluchko||

    ITT aluchko taught us that "secretly collaborating with" means openly interviewing people (to the extent that you're quoting their emails to you in the article)

    No, "secretly collaborating with" mean secretly collaborating with.

    "Which is my whorish way of asking if you have anything you'd like to make sure I include."

    [..]

    Over the next three days, Yiannopoulos passed the article back to Yarvin and the white nationalist Saucier, the latter of whom gave line-by-line annotations.

    [..]

    On the 27th, now co-bylined, the story was ready for upper management: Bannon and Larry Solov, Breitbart's press-shy CEO. It was also ready, on a separate email chain, for another read and round of comments from the white nationalist Saucier, the feudalist Yarvin, the neo-Nazi Weev, and Vox Day.

    That's not just interviews, he sent them the unfinished article for review and comment, which was not disclosed in the article.

    Unfortunately, Milo didn't, AFAICT, write anything on the subject in Breitbart for the rest of 2016, so I guess that wouldn't count as furthering white supremacist ideas. Huh.

    I'm going to digging through Milo's articles but his role was a lot more than columnist.

    Oh, and he also sang karaoke as they literally gave him the Nazi salute.

    I'm not sure how much more obvious the association can get.

  • jdgalt1||

    Milo pretty definitively proves in DANGEROUS that he has never been alt-right at all, and in fact, that his only connection to them was to write a piece that exposed them for what they are.

  • Bored Lawyer||

    Inviting Milo is the equivalent of giving someone the middle finger. It is crude and lacks any real substance. The man is nothing but an obnoxious empty suit.

    But it is still sometimes appropriate to give the middle-finger response. When someone is totally outrageous, then reasoned response may not be the right response.

    When one side becomes hysterical and censorious even of speakers who are reasonable and substantive (think Ben Shapiro or Guy Benson), then the middle-finger response may be the right one.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    "The man is nothing but an obnoxious empty suit."

    Without the suit.

  • David Nieporent||

    When one side becomes hysterical and censorious even of speakers who are reasonable and substantive (think Ben Shapiro or Guy Benson), then the middle-finger response may be the right one.

    No.

    Especially not on a college campus.

  • Careless||

    Out of curiosity, how many transcripts of Milo's speeches at schools have you read to make this conclusion? I've read only two, so there certainly could be a number of terrible things he's said in them I'm unaware of.

  • jdgalt1||

    > When one side becomes hysterical and censorious even of speakers who are reasonable and substantive (think Ben Shapiro or Guy Benson), then the middle-finger response may be the right one.

    Yes. Especially if the police will use the opportunity to lock up the terrorists who would shut that speaker up.

  • y81||

    I don't understand why professors are so cowardly that they only people they can reprove are students. There are a hundred university presidents doing things much more offensive than inviting Milo to give a talk, but Rossman doesn't appear to have the nerve or integrity to take them on. Why doesn't he denounce Richard Brodhead? Or Peter Salovey? Or James Wagner? For that matter, why don't the Contributors pick on someone their own size (or a little bigger)?

    You respond, why is my own comment anonymous? I don't have guaranteed lifetime employment, unlike Rossman.

  • Jonathan Adler||

    I've been accused of many things, but failing to criticize university administrations has not been among them (until now).

  • y81||

    Citations? I haven't read this blog for several years, while it was behind a paywall, so maybe you have done more than I thought. What have you said about the men I named? And what has Rossman said?

  • Dr. Benway||

    Prof. Rossman misses the main problem.

    Many conservatives agree with Milo on the hate and bigotry. For conservatives, it's not a bug, it's a feature.

  • mad_kalak||

    If Milo is not so much a bigot, as he is anti-Islam, because he is queer as a 3 dollar bill, and would resent being thrown off a roof. Racist, not so much, he's actually married to a black man. Now, he's not a fan of feminists, but in the broad meaning of the word bigotry, I'm not sure that word applies. Disagreement with feminists is so common that the majority of Americans all be bigots if that's all it took.

  • Careless||

    So you don't know what Milo says, but you're sure conservatives you don't know agree with it because you know they're bigots. Got it.

  • AmosArch||

    Seems to me Prof Rossman is one of the establishment 'conservatives' The poor quisling, if not an outright turncoat is fat and happy with the status quo since the 60s of the rightwing being seen as old fuddyduddies who serve as passive punching bags and one liners for an ascendant left with almost complete control of the media narrative. The only 'valid' champions of conservatism are the handful of blacksheep dorky conservative academics scattered around writing papers that their colleagues will ignore. He can't stand that some on his side can actually form a dynamic movement that actually can appeal to the youth to an extent and actually gets attention and stuff done for a change.

  • Sarcastr0||

    If only there were a middle ground between dork and asshole.

  • Nige||

    Yes, Milo's very popular with Young Nazis.

  • Careless||

    young Nazis are big on gay Jewish guys in interracial marriages?

  • OtisAH||

    We all have our kinks.

  • aluchko||

  • apedad||

    "young Nazis are big on gay Jewish guys in interracial marriages?"

    I'm guessing that's their secret rite of initiation.

  • Nige||

    They do love their pets.

  • Rossami||

    Prof Rossman's criticism would be more credible with evidence that he has been even-handed in the application of his principles over time. The apparent lack of objection to other shock-jock speakers cannot help but suggest that more than a merely principled stance might be at play here.

  • bernard11||

    Now apparently, conservatives are willing to embrace a man who says despicable things for the purpose of "triggering snowflakes."

    Wake up, Rossman. Conservatives have been embracing this sort of thing for a long time. Think, Limbaugh, Coulter, and their imitators. This kind of person has way more influence on the right than the conservative professors who imagine an American conservatism that simply does not exist.

  • Eidde||

    I'm fine with rejecting Milo so long as they find someone more substantive who is also controversial and will test the limits of left-wing academic tolerance. Thomas Sowell, for example. Or Charles Murray.

  • Eidde||

    Prof. Sowell could be requested to promote his book Intellectuals and Society. Or his book Black Rednecks and White Liberals.

  • mad_kalak||

    Charles Murray got the leftie academic treatment too, at Middlebury College.

    Not Thomas Sowell, who is retired these days. The Ruben Report is supposed to have an interview with him though.

  • David Nieporent||

    Or – here's a thought – they could find conservatives who have something intelligent and informative to say, and not even take into consideration how liberals will react.

  • mad_kalak||

    "Though liberals do a great deal of talking about hearing other points of view, it sometimes shocks them to learn that there are other points of view" William F. Buckley

    Whatever a conservative says, liberals will say it's not intelligent or informative if they don't agree with it. This obviously happens with conservatives, but then again, they are not the ones shutting people down on college campuses.

  • Nige||

    Oh no! They'll disagree! How very dare they! No wonder you prefer your Milos

  • Eidde||

    "not even take into consideration how liberals will react."

    Nope, I'm in favor of testing the limits of academic tolerance - it's either challenge the censorship or learn to live with it, and I'm for challenging.

  • David Nieporent||

    Or ignore it.

  • dontquestionit||

    That would be nice, but this is about getting attention. You can't be a well-reasoned smartie in the modern world. You need to get people talking and being emotional, offensive, and wild.

  • M.L.||

    I've only watched a few YouTube clips of Milo, but to claim that he has nothing to do with reasoned argument seems obviously false. His notable capacity for reasoned argument is what enables him to be a provocateur. "No one is more hated than he who speaks the truth." That said, I think I agree with the rest of all of this.

  • Sarcastr0||

    He has two modes - 'I'm a super calm victim of these PC crazies' and 'trolling the libs by arguing white hetro males are inherently better lol.'

    I'm not impressed.

  • Nige||

    I dunno, people hate relentless liars, too, hence the danger of basing anything on supposed reactions rather than on what these people actually say or do, you might end up voting for someone based entirely on the reaction they provoke.

  • Here For Remy||

    As a libertarian leaning conservative who is a big fan of "most things" Reason, and as someone who is very familiar with Milo's work, I am shocked at the level of ignorance of Milo that is exhibited by the readers here.

    Milo burst onto the stage with his shock routine, but behind that is a man who is incredibly well read and traveled and knowledgeable about a wide array of issues. He is a very talented guy, even as I find his lifestyle off putting. Truth is truth, and the dude is smart and funny, and effective.

    I've thought over the last few months that Milo and Remy are two young mega talents who lean libertarian....albeit different talents. We should embrace any exposure either of them get.

  • TwelveInchPianist||

    I've always found videos of Milo's speeches quite entertaining, even if I don't agree with all of his opinions. And the pedophilia angle has always struck me as terribly anti-gay. How many folks would say that about a straight person who said that they had a positive experience with an adult when they were underage?

  • TwelveInchPianist||

    "The most important reason not to host such a talk is that it is evil on the merits. Your conscience should tell you that you never want anything to do with someone whose entire career is not reasoned argument, but shock jock performance art. "

    Professor Rossman's opinion of what my conscience should tell me is quite fascinating.

  • Rigelsen||

    Milo is certainly a shock jock, and certainly not everyone's cup of tea, including mine. But the string of unsupported aspersions thrown at him by Rossami seem pretty hard to square with the published details of his life. While it certainly may be "openly conservative" to engage in this form of trial by assertion and aspersion, but Jonathan, I'm curious: Is it your conservative side or your libertarian side that's in support of this approach.

  • Careless||

    Ok, let's be serious here: has anyone in this thread who has a problem with Milo making speeches on campus read any of his on campus speeches? Rossman? Adler? Boredlawyer?

    Again, I'm not very familiar with the guy, but aside from crude comments about his own sexuality, his speeches that I've read just aren't offensive

  • M.L.||

    Same here.

    There are hordes of Marxist professors lecturing at our universities every day who are more offensive, hateful, destructive of truth and dangerous to society than Milo is. Where are the pitchforks? Where is the drumbeat to drive them off campus?

  • Sarcastr0||

    hordes of Marxist professors

    Alright, dude.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    It must astonish guys like M.L. to learn that our strongest colleges and universities are operated in the liberal-libertarian mainstream and that conservative control relegates hundreds of colleges and universities to third- and four-tier (or unranked status).

    Conservatives whine incessantly about how our best schools are too liberal and don't have enough activist conservatives on their faculties, but overlook the point that conservatives seem unable to develop strong schools despite the ostensible market failure.

    Yale and Harvard are Yale and Harvard for a reason, and Biola and Regent are Biola and Regent for a reason. The market has spoken, vividly, but conservatives do not like the verdict, or the verdict's incongruence with conservative teachings about markets, self-reliance, and the merits of conservative preferences.

  • bernard11||

    Hordes, I tell you! Hordes!!

    What BS. Do you think anyone to the left of Roy Moore is a Marxist?

  • OtisAH||

    The event has been cancelled.

  • Careless||

    Well this was one incredibly humiliating thread for the Left, and the Right looks pretty stupid, too.

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