Back in 2015-16, Milo Yiannopoulos was a supernova. The flashy homosexual conservative was his own brand, and his fans practically idolized him. Sometimes literally. Milo gained notoriety for railing against the LGBT community, which ostensibly wasn’t in his interest. Infamously uttering “feminism is cancer” didn’t go over too well with college students on the West Coast, either. As Senior Editor of Breitbart.com he frequently wrote pieces critical of leftist culture and policies.
Understandbly, liberals weren’t too fond of his brash escapades. A homosexual telling liberals their policies are beyond the scope of reason can’t look good. Milo also left an indelible mark on the 2016 election with his speaking tours against the politically-correct. Conservative college students felt empowered. They learned that it was okay to share their ideas in educational institutions, of all places. And liberal students needed to just shut up and deal with it.
Now, in 2020, he’s vanished without a trace. He’s not out there calling Joe Biden a creepy pedo or Bernie Sanders an angsty 80-year old teenager. He’s no longer on Twitter or Facebook, either. Sure, he’s still on YouTube but last I checked, his channel doesn’t have the verified checkmark. Plus, he has less than a million subscribers which is paltry for someone of his stature. Milo is now a shell of his former self. What happened?
After the election of Trump, Milo’s career took a downturn. He allegedly made comments advocating for the sexual relationships between boys and men. For Breitbart to save face, they asked him to step down as Senior Editor. This had to be the worst blow as Breitbart is a major publication in online media. In the months that followed, he built up anticipation for a comeback. Of course, it fizzled as his services on college campuses were no longer needed. His jokes about Islam and obese women were no longer amusing to his fans. He gradually became a pariah. Why?
See, Milo not only drew a lot of negative attention to himself, but he seemed to relish in it. He billed himself “the most fabulous supervillain on the Internet” and his speaking tour was even dubbed “The Dangerous Faggot Tour”. He was jarring for the sake of being jarring. I mentioned that he was no longer on Twitter. The reason for this is that he publicly exorciated Leslie Jones by saying she looks like a man and even encouraged his supporters to keep going after her with racist taunts. Sure, Jones has lambasted conservatives in the past, I get that. But Milo was out of line. A simple assessment of the situation makes that pretty clear. It also wasn’t the first time Milo got in trouble with the Tweet Police. He got several warnings before the website cut him loose for good.
The fact that he openly celebrated getting banned from Twitter speaks volumes. He was deliberately pushing the envelope to see how far he could go with being publically offensive. All that is on him. He did what he did and said what he said. For every action, there’s a consequence.
A couple years ago I tried my hand at being edgy on social media. I made some jokes that definitely pushed boundaries. They were jokes involving race, sex, and gender. Of course, I won’t repeat any of them here. I learned that while edginess may be initially entertaining to some people, it’s going to get tiresome really fast. And I mean really fast. People are simply going to ban or unfollow you if you keep that crap up.
Hey, I’m in favor of free speech like Milo claimed to be. I don’t believe you should be thrown into the gulags for saying the “wrong” thing, but guess what? The laws on the books are not going to change how people will respond or adapt to you. If you keep spouting objectionable material, people will get tired of it. They’ll take measures to not have to see or hear you again. That’s just the way it is.
Like all of you, I have the power of social media at my fingertips. Being on these platforms is a privilege. These platforms were built by people who put in the time and work to make something that benefits us all. Let’s respect that.