I was going to write about my back-and-forth with Stuart Stevens, in fact I still am. But while I was digging around on The New York Times website, I happened to find an interview that wasn’t supposed to hit until this weekend. Many of you are already quite familiar with the subject. His name is Milo Yiannopoulos.
Ana Marie Cox, who once went at Don Imus in a completely disingenuous way (and who also used to be hot, but now the alleged booze and drugs seem to have taken their toll) was the one who did the honors here. A little more background on Ms. Cox. She founded Wonkette as part of the then-burgeoning Gawker Media empire, before moving on to other jobs in the mainstream media, including TIME, GQ, and The Guardian. Now, she sits atop the interviewer perch at The New York Times Magazine.
Anyway, none of you likely care about Ana. Let’s move along to the main event, shall we?
Cox is in red and Milo is in blue.
You’re one of the loudest, most provocative voices at Breitbart News, and you’re currently on a speaking tour of college campuses, railing against “P.C. culture.” You once admitted in a profile that your public persona started out as a comedy character that you created because “I didn’t like me very much.” What didn’t you like about yourself?
I’ve wrestled with being religious and being conservative and being gay, but the reason I felt like that is because of other gay people. The only real shaming I’ve ever experienced has been from other gay people when I reveal my politics or my religion.
Did they hurt your feelings?
No. I don’t have feelings to hurt.
Do you like yourself now?
I love myself. I am the best person I know.
One thing both Milo and Trump have shown is that the mainstream media doesn’t really care about how supposedly odious someone is. Like many of you, I enjoy Milo, but the media frequently portrays him as a public menace…just as they do with Trump. And while Milo certainly isn’t on The Donald’s level quite yet, the amount of free press he gets is somewhat astonishing. I’m not sure if all of you realize this or not, but this interview marks a sort of high water mark for Mr. Yiannopoulos when it comes to the traditional media, at least in my view. This is prime real estate.
You’ve called feminism a “cancer” and Malala Yousafzai “schoolmarmish.” Is there anything you wouldn’t say or wouldn’t mock? There’s nothing I wouldn’t mock.
I wouldn’t say the N-word. It’s an ugly, hateful word.
Why is it any different from anything else?
I defend people’s right to use offensive speech, I just don’t personally choose to use the N-word. But I think people who do use those words should not be subjected to censure. That’s already happening in the U.K. — the police are actively trying to regulate “offensive speech.” That is so Orwellian and terrifying and horrendous.
This is actually something I agree with Milo on. I don’t use the word either, unless I’m singing along with Dr. Dre or something like that. I also think I’ve used it once or twice when quoting someone else, but only a handful of times. It just strikes me as lazy and needlessly risqué.
What would surprise people the most about you?
People assume because I have a very thick skin that I don’t have feelings. I don’t, for the most part. But occasionally I’m capable of great acts of charity. I tend to do it quietly.
But you promote everything else about yourself. Why not your charitable giving?
Well, if I’m going to promote a charity, I’ll promote
You mean the white-privilege fund that you recently started?
Yeah — the Yiannopoulos Privilege Grant. It’s both means and ability tested, so they have to show academic promise, but they also need to need the money, so it’s poor white men.
I remember the night we got together in London and one reason I do is because it was all on Milo. Kudos, although I’m not sure my drinking tab counts towards charity.
To make it even more subversive, shouldn’t you give it to rich white men?
Yes, that would maybe be funnier, but it wouldn’t do any good in the world. The thing that really rubs people the wrong way is the sort of hypocrisy of the social-justice progressive left. They don’t actually like it when they see somebody doing real good in the world because it makes them feel bad about themselves ’cause all they do is sit on Twitter all day and call people misogynists. Like, 600 people say they’re going to come protest me on Facebook, and 20 show up. They are lazy, indolent blowhards on the Internet.
That rich white man question was actually somewhat funny. It’s been a long while (close to a decade) since I’ve laughed at anything from Ana Marie Cox. Good job on that, I suppose.
You’ve defended [Trump’s] perceived missteps with the idea that he’s “destroying old notions of what’s acceptable and unacceptable.” But outside the G.O.P. primaries, he’s becoming more and more unpopular. What’s the overall benefit to him?
Trump might become deeply unpopular in the way that I, with some people, am deeply unpopular, but that doesn’t mean that we don’t get things done. You can be unpopular and successful.
If you succeed at your goal and everyone is able to say whatever they want, what happens next?
I might have to become a social-justice warrior ’cause I’ll be out of a job.
The link to the full interview is here, although I only left like two short bits out. It’s all fair use though, my dear Ms. Cox. I offered my own commentary, you see. Although my thoughts were kinda short. To be fair, the interview itself wasn’t really that long, but then again none of these are. They’re sort of meant to be small windows into a personality’s thinking that can be briskly read in 2 minutes or less. This qualified on both counts, so I’ll have to give it a thumbs up.