Writer Milo Yiannopoulos and former pharmaceutical executive Martin Shkreli were prevented from speaking at a scheduled event last night at the campus of the University of California, Davis. Protesters shouted "shut it down" and grew louder and more raucous as police put up barricades before the event. About 30 minutes before the event was to begin the sponsoring organization, UC Davis College Republicans, decided to cancel.
Establishment media have labeled Yiannopoulos, a British national who frequently writes on political and cultural issues, as an “alt-right” who writes for the “right-wing Breitbart News” has been throttled by social media. Because of comments about the performance of actress Leslie Jones in a reprise of the "Ghostbusters" movie, he was permanently banned from the Twitter social media platform. Shkreli was recently suspended from Twitter.
In a Facebook post, Yiannopoulos said affirmed that his appearance was cancelled because of "violence from left-wing protesters." UC Davis Interim Chancellor Ralph J. Hexter said he was "deeply disappointed" by the protests and cancellation. "Our community is founded on principles of respect for all views, even those that we personally find repellent," Hexter said. "As I have stated repeatedly, a university is at its best when it listens to and critically engages opposing views, especially ones that many of us find upsetting or even offensive."
Yiannopoulos has been on a college speaking tour and has drawn similar reaction at other universities, and a lucrative book deal he recently signed has caused a similar outcry.
Shkreli stepped down as the head of Turing Pharmaceuticals last year after he was criticized in 2015 for raising the price of a malaria medication.