What you should know about British writer Milo Yiannopoulos is that he is a racist and sexist troll. He has mobilised thousands of netizens into dehumanising and insulting LGBTQ community, people of colour and also women. What you should know is that he now has a bigger platform, a multi-million dollar book deal with Simon & Schuster to let his freak flag fly, and ruin lives, in much bigger numbers.
According to Yiannopoulos, an editor with the far-right American news organisation, Breitbart News, Birth Control ‘makes you a slut’ and gives you ‘cottage cheese thighs’. And of course, he is of the opinion that if you are obese, you should hate yourself, because fat shaming is for your own good, as he puts it, “And no, Twitter. Every size is not beautiful and feminism makes women ugly.” He declared his birthday as the ‘World Patriarchy Day’ and urged men to ‘cat-call at least five women’ and ‘shoot something’ among other ingenious ideas.
Yiannopoulos, who has been permanently banned by Twitter for inciting an army of trolls towards comedian and Ghostbusters star Leslie Jones, is a product of the vitriolic system, which the internet can often turn out to be. Yiannopoulus was recently in a meeting with top executives of Simon & Schuster and “spent half an hour trying to shock them with lewd jokes and outrageous opinions. I thought they were going to have me escorted from the building—but instead, they offered me a wheelbarrow full of money.” Yes, a misogynist and racist has now landed a $250,000 book deal with one of the top five publishing houses in the world. And of course, the book will be called Dangerous.
The backlash to this news has been eminent. The Chicago Review of Books has announced that it is not going to review a single Simon & Schuster book in 2017, and Jones tweeted to the publishers for supporting a bigot’s views and opinions go mainstream. She was soon supported by director Judd Apatow and author Stephen King. Meanwhile, Simon & Schuster has issued a statement to stand by the publication of the book, which is available on Amazon for a pre-order and is already a No 1. Bestseller.