Thursday, February 02, 2017

Campuses give in to "heckler's veto" when Milo Yiannopolos has events (and there are new conspiracy theories)

Violent protests erupted at UC Berkeley Wednesday night, forcing the University to cancel provocateur and Breitbart journalist Milo Yiannopoulos   News accounts from San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Yahoo! give details.

When I read Milo’s posts, I find most of them to be satirical, intended to make fun of identity politics, political correctness, and the idea that people need safe zones and shelter ("trigger warnings") from offense (as from “microaggressions” in campus speech codes, as in this recent WSJ article by Peter Berkowitz  ).   But occasionally he apparently makes comments at specific individuals (such as some transgender) who don’t conform to his own idea of what is virtuous.  (As a “dangerous faggot”, Milo actually says he is attracted to men who look and act like real men.)  Some of his comments are construed by some as slights against people with disabilities that, if unchecked, tend to underscore Fascist ideology as shown in history.  And they gay male community often has to deal with its own “body fascism.” Milo can be quite handsome when he loses the hair dye, but some liberal publications have shown him with his face computer-aged.

Milo denies he is a white supremacist or a member of the “alt right”, and has even threatened legal action against at least one publication for calling him that (Breitbart story)

I’m not completely sure of the facts on the Leslie Jones-Ghostbuster affair that got him banned from Twitter.

But Milo has also supported admissions policies that help men because fewer men are going to college now (Breitbart).

The violent demonstrations are a form of “heckler’s veto” and indeed a threat to free speech from others, especially other conservatives who may be more temperate but may be viewed as “the enemy” by the Left.  Repeated violent outbursts can led to crackdown on free speech by everybody – a typical terrorist or “revolutionist” or mass movement approach.

Some conservative commentators have noted that it is the violent element of the far left that has given Milo his career (like the last movement of Shostakovich's 13th Symphony, which is called "A Career").

As for Twitter banning, it may be a little capricious, as with the Washington Post analysis.  In December 2015 I wrote some pieces on my "BillBoushka" blog on Twitter standards of behavior after one good friend in the music world blocked me under circumstances that seem mysteriously or somehow factually wrong.  It hasn't happened since then as far as I know, so I think it was a fluke.

Milo reminds me of bad boy Shane Lyons in the 2011 film "Judas Kiss", a character whom the actor who plays him, Timo Descamps, has characterized as "a little mean" and "a little spoiled" and even "evil".  But in "The Dark Place" (2014) Descamps played a similarly demeaanored charismatic gay character Wil, except this time Wil is a very good person, possibly with superpowers (a gay "Clark Kent") who saves Keegan at the end.  Ironically, I think either Milo or Descamps would have sailed through all challenges that a Donald Trump could have thrown at them on "The Apprentice" and survived all the boardrooms.  (Just don't ask them, like Troy McClain, to "take one for the team".   So, let Milo replace Steve Bannon in Trump's administration."He's hired."

Wikipedia attribution link for University of California picture CCSA 3.0 by Koenig.

Update: Feb. 11

Here's another "conspiracy theory" (Volokh Conspiracy and  Paul Cassell) about the Berekeley attack, and one concern is that police can't find any digital fingerprints (I guess they can't see TOR).  If so, that's a legitimate national security concern that Trump could address;  we wouldn't see it coming if this were WMD. Milo says the Left muzzles the difference between speech and action.

CNN has another take on this;  is Milo "normalizing" an attitude of deprecation toward some people?

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