Former Breitbart Senior Editor MILO still plans to speak at UC Berkeley despite the cancellation of Free Speech Week due to pressure from college administrators.
MILO held an emergency press conference with Pamela Geller and Mike Cernovich via Facebook live on Saturday to address the issues surrounding Free Speech Week. MILO announced that while the Berkeley Patriot group was forced to shut down the week-long event due to pressure from the UC Berkeley administration, he would still be making an appearance on the college campus to speak to the many free speech advocates that had come to Berkeley.
“First, I’m sorry to say that the student group hosting Free Speech Week has withdrawn its sponsorship,” MILO wrote in a press release. “We were not given advance notice of this and I’m disappointed to have been completely blindsided by their letter, a copy of which is available on my Facebook and YouTube. I do understand their fears and they are right on all counts when they say UC Berkeley is threatening their educational futures. But we cannot host an official university event without a student sponsor.”
MILO had good news however for those that traveled to Berkeley for the event, however, declaring, “We will be hosting an unofficial university event. My security team confirmed to me this morning that the police department will be out in force on Sproul Plaza tomorrow at noon.”
“We will not be deterred. We will proceed no matter what, in whatever format we can, to realize the promise of Free Speech Week and send a message that conservatives will not be bowed by pressure from academics, the media or anyone else,” he continued.
“In my capacity as a private person I will give a speech every day from Sunday to Wednesday on the steps of Sproul Plaza and speak at length on the subjects Free Speech Week was advertised to cover,” MILO explained. “Although without student sponsorship we can no longer offer our speakers the police protection that would have come with an officially registered event at UC Berkeley, we nevertheless invite the Berkeley PD to make peaceable assembly in Sproul Plaza safe in the coming week, so that I, and anyone else who would like to speak in his or her capacity as a private citizen, can exercise our Constitutional rights without bodily harm. I will be joined tomorrow on the Berkeley campus by Mike Cernovich, Lauren Southern, Sabo, Ariana Rowlands, Lisa de Pasquale, and Pamela Geller.”
MILO continued to criticize Berkeley and the administrators’ actions in weeks leading up to the event:
UC Berkeley hypocritically named this academic year its “Year of Free Speech,” which is something you’d only do if you had a really serious PR problem. That PR problem will be worse, not better, today, and Berkeley has only itself to blame. The administration has done everything in its power to crush its own students’ aspirations. UC Berkeley may have a deservedly poor reputation for free speech, and its students will graduate knowing less than when they came in as freshmen, but you have to give the school credit: they are masters of bureaucratic dirty dealing.
“Under the terms currently offered to us by the university, Berkeley Free Speech Week could be more safely held in a London no-go zone or in a Paris Shariah-compliant area,” MILO declared. “It would be safer to stand in a Stockholm ghetto and blame Muslims for the rape epidemic in Sweden than to embrace free speech in Berkeley, a town that considers ANTIFA its unofficial police force. Nonetheless, we will be continuing with our plans, albeit in modified form. I had hoped to use this press conference to discuss the speakers and events planned for Berkeley Free Speech Week. And I will. But that has become a little more complicated as of late last night. The first thing to tell you is that there will indeed be speeches and rallies this week, beginning tomorrow on the UC Berkeley campus.”
MILO then addressed the fans that may have traveled a long distance just to attend the event and offered to remedy the situation as best he could:
Even though I lay the blame for this event squarely at the feet of UC Berkeley administrators, I am going to make it right for the people who traveled in. Please forward your flight tickets, train receipts and hotel reservations to email@example.com. We have a huge surprise planned for you tomorrow. I deeply appreciate the efforts freedom-loving Americans have gone to in order to support this event and I am personally grateful to the fans who came in from all four corners of the earth. I want you to know that I share your frustration with the administration and with the media, and that I will take care of you.
“We will see you at noon tomorrow on Sproul Plaza at UC Berkeley, and we will speak, come hell or high water,” MILO declared in his Facebook Live video. “No matter what the administration does, no matter the actions of the students, we will be there.”