At the request of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, NYU has agreed to postpone Milo Yiannopoulos’ NYU visit originally scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 31, according to a statement from the university.
“Bill de Blasio today requested that NYU postpone and reschedule the classroom appearance by Milo Yiannopoulos for public safety reasons in light of the nearby Halloween parades and [New York Police Department] assessments of risk,” NYU spokesman John Beckman wrote in a statement. “Given the importance of close coordination between NYU’s Public Safety personnel and the NYPD to ensuring safety, the university agreed to the postponement.”
Beckman said there is no makeup date scheduled as of now.
Yiannopoulos — who has called for deportations of Muslims from Western countries, condoned pedophilia and said that vigilante squads should shoot journalists — was invited by Liberal Studies professor Michael Rectenwald to discuss the intersection of Halloween, culture and politics at a classroom event Wednesday. NYU activists had denounced the planned visit, with some speaking out on Twitter and others calling for students to contact their deans.
“[The] entire city of New York is terrified of one gay man stepping out of line and calling out the Left as the intolerant, censorious crybabies they are,” Yiannopoulos said to Rectenwald in a statement obtained by WSN. “And they just proved it — by censoring me again. I couldn’t ask for more conclusive proof.”
Rectenwald also disagreed with the decision to postpone the event.
“While Milo Yiannopoulos is blamed for the threat to public safety, leftist protesters are the ones who pose the actual danger, with their proclivity for violence,” Rectenwald said in an email to WSN. “I was merely trying to arrange a cultural exchange between my class and a harmless person from the center-right.”
New York City Council members urged NYU to reschedule the visit earlier today, citing the day’s proximity to the shooting of a synagogue in Pittsburgh and the fact that police would already spread thin by the annual Halloween parade held in Greenwich Village.
In 2016, NYU canceled a planned Yiannopoulos visit, citing concern for the safety and well-being of its students. Wednesday’s event was not intended to be open to the entire NYU community and the time of the class was not publicized.
NYU was first made aware of Yiannopoulos’ planned visit on Sunday.
This is a developing news story. WSN will update this article as more information becomes available.
Additional reporting by Jemima McEvoy, Sayer Devlin and Meghna Maharishi.
Email Alex Domb at [email protected].