This week, Bill Maher invited alt-right agitator Milo Yiannopolous to appear on his show, Real Time with Bill Maher. At the time, one of the planned guests, award-winning journalist Jeremy Scahill, decided to withdraw from appearing on the show because he was afraid that Maher was legitimizing the alt-right.
Yiannopolous has promoted a lot of despicable views -- some of them ostensibly just to arise anger. For example, here's what he has to say in support of pedophilia:
We get hung up on this sort of child abuse stuff to the point where we are heavily policing consensual adults ... In the homosexual world, particularly, some of those relationships between younger boys and older men -- the sort of 'coming of age' relationship -- those relationships in which those older men help those young boys discover who they are and give them security and safety and provide them with love and a reliable, sort of rock, where they can't speak to their parents.
Scahill got a lot of criticism for that position. Even the ladies of The View didn't agree, claiming that the best way to handle the alt-right is to expose their views. They were convinced that Maher would make Yiannopolous look terrible.
Unfortunately, the exact opposite occurred. Instead of portaying Yiannopolous negatively, Maher spent the whole time playing footsie with him -- and the two kept laughing at each others' jokes. Worse, Maher let Yiannopolous spout lies about transgender people without any disagreement. Maher even said it was 'understandable' to discriminate against Yiannopolous.
Well, we now have a result from the show, as today, the popular CPAC conference announced that it will choose Yiannopolous as its keynote speaker.
CPAC is no fringe event -- George W. Bush, Mitt Romney, and Ronald Regan have spoken at the conference -- and now, they have selected a member of the alt-right to speak his bigoted views. In one year, Yiannopolous went from a shadowy, fringe figure who was only liked by White Nationalists to a mainstream character, with a book deal and now this speaking engagement. Note that recently, he has also gotten credentials to attend the White House press briefing, and Trump has threatened U.C. Berkley for not allowing him to speak.
Maher has been criticized from all sorts of publications for how he made Yiannopolous look like a teddy bear during his show. Yet, he has yet to respond to that criticism. At the same time, Maher was attacking Scahill for not appearing on Real Time with Bill Maher.
Scahill was clearly right when he warned this:
It will be exploited by Yiannopoulos in an attempt to legitimize his hateful agenda. Yiannopoulos's appearance could also be used to incite violence against immigrants, transgender people, and others at a time when the Trump Administration is already seeking to formalize a war against some of the most vulnerable people in our society.
And now, Maher has to claim responsibility for creating this alt-right celebrity. Unfortunately, he doesn't seem to care...
Wanna read more on this? Check these out: Real Time With Bill Maher: Is Bill Maher A White Nationalist? Sounds Like It (Watch) (more); Jeremy Scahill Won't Do 'Real Time With Bill Maher' Due To Milo Yiannopoulos Invitation (more).