Milo Yiannopoulos, a conservative journalist and former editor of Breitbart News, resigned from the publication Tuesday following backlash for perceived pedophilic comments.
“I would be wrong to allow my poor choice of words to detract from my colleagues’ important reporting, so today I am resigning from Breitbart, effective immediately,” Yiannopoulos said in a statement Tuesday. “This decision is mine alone.”
Yiannopoulos made light of pedophilia by Roman Catholic priests and seemed to condone sexual relations with boys as young as 13 in a video podcast that circulated over the weekend. The former editor, who announced on Tuesday he’d been sexually abused between the ages of 13 and 16 — one abuser was a priest — said he felt that his own experiences allowed him to comment openly on the topic of abuse. He noted, however, that his comments came across in a way staunchly different from what he’d intended.
“I understand that my usual blend of British sarcasm, provocation and gallows humor might have come across as flippancy, a lack of care for other victims or, worse, ‘advocacy.'” Yiannopoulos wrote in a Monday Facebook post. “I deeply regret that. People deal with things from their past in different ways.”
Yiannopoulos also denounced pedophilia as a “vile and disgusting crime” in a Facebook post Sunday.
Following the video’s circulation, American Conservative Union organizers on Monday uninvited Yiannopoulos from the Conservative Political Action Conference, an annual political conference that conservative elected officials and activists attend. Yiannopoulos was set to be a headline speaker.
Yiannopoulos was also supposed to speak on Oct. 26 at this university last semester at the invitation of Terps for Trump as part of his “Dangerous Faggot” speaking tour. The student organization had to cancel the event because they couldn’t afford high security costs the University of Maryland required to host the talk.
The high security fee came from the need for extra officers, K9 units and a change in venue because of incidents such as bomb threats at other schools where Yiannopoulos has spoken, according to an Eventbrite email sent to ticket holders.
The comments in the video resulted in Simon & Schuster and its Threshold Editions imprint canceling his book deal Monday as well. The book, Dangerous, was set to be released in March.