Milo Yiannopoulos to speak at CPAC
Right-wing provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos is slated to speak at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) next week, the group hosting the conference said Saturday.
The addition of the controversial Breitbart News senior editor is a contrast from the high-profile conference’s list of established conservatives such as Vice President Pence and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas).
Yiannopoulos told The Hollywood Reporter, which first reported on his speech, that he will discuss his “experiences in America battling feminists, Black Lives Matter, the media, professors and the entertainment industry.”
The Breitbart editor made headlines earlier this month when his scheduled speech at the University of California-Berkeley was cancelled after protests against the event turned violent.
The Berkeley protest was among several demonstrations at various colleges and universities opposing Yiannopoulos’ college speaking tour.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, those protests are part of the reason CPAC Chairman Matt Schlapp decided to host Yiannopoulos as the meeting’s keynote speaker.
“An epidemic of speech suppression has taken over college campuses,” Schlapp said. “Milo has exposed their liberal thuggery and we think free speech includes hearing Milo’s important perspective.”
The American Conservative Union (ACU), which hosts CPAC, said Saturday that it had “announced over 75 speakers for CPAC 2017, including Milo who will bring his perspective to our stage.”
“We realize that this invitation will be accompanied by controversy which we think the conservative movement and our CPAC attendees can handle,” the ACU said in a statement.
“Each will use his or her individual judgement as to the worthiness of each speaker, including Milo. ACU has publicly taken on racism and the alt-right and will continue to do so aggressively, like ACU’s founders before us.”
“We look forward to hearing Milo’s message and having him sit down with Scott Walter to answer some tough questions. We believe that all of us are up to the challenge at a time when political correctness is properly being discarded,” it added.
Organizers noted that they had already announced Michael Reagan, the eldest child of former President Ronald Reagan, earlier this month as the keynote speaker for the ACU’s Ronald Reagan dinner on Friday night.
Yiannopoulos appeared on HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher” this past Friday, where he sparred with the show’s liberal host and took aim at high-profile female celebrities, including Lena Dunham and Amy Schumer.
Updated: 8:29 p.m.
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