Milo Yiannopoulos resigned from his position as senior editor at Breitbart News Tuesday, February 21, after he was accused of defending pedophilia in a resurfaced video.
“Breitbart News has stood by me when others caved,” Yiannopoulos, 33, said in a statement, according to The New York Times. “They have allowed me to carry conservative and libertarian ideas to communities that would otherwise never have heard them. They have been a significant factor in my success. I’m grateful for that freedom and for the friendships I forged there.”
“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. This decision is mine alone,” he continued. “When your friends have done right by you, you do right by them. For me, now, that means stepping aside so my colleagues at Breitbart can get back to the great work they do.”
The alt-right British journalist’s announcement came after a pair of videos filmed last year surfaced on Sunday, February 19, in which he appeared to defend sex with young boys and joking about his own underage sexual past with a Catholic priest.
The videos led the Conservative Political Action Conference to cancel a scheduled speech by Yiannopoulos on Monday, February 20. The same day, Simon & Schuster pulled the plug on the publication of his book, Dangerous, which was scheduled for a June release. Prior to the cancelation, he had signed a $250,000 deal for the book, leading many readers to boycott the publisher.
“My kind of dry British sarcasm and penchant for provocation could have come off as flippant to other people, and that was unintended,” the author told CNNMoney on Monday of the reaction to the resurfaced videos. “To be clear, I think it’s a vile and disgusting crime, and I’m horrified that people think I believe otherwise.”
Yiannopoulos was the troll behind the defamation and cyberbullying of Saturday Night Live star and Ghostbusters actress Leslie Jones last year. He was banned from Twitter following the incident.
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