Milo Yiannopoulos is working on a ‘secret new media venture’ that will allow him to stay in the United States, according to reports.
Given that Yiannopoulos is a British citizen living in the United States on a work visa, some observers had assumed that his resignation from Breitbart following his controversial comments which appeared to excuse pedophilia in some circumstances meant he would soon be leaving the country.
Not so fast, according to TMZ this morning, which reports that Yiannopoulos, who was banned from Twitter after provoking online harassment of a black actress, Leslie Jones, and has made a series of offensive comments about feminists, transgender people, Muslims and Black Lives Matter protesters, is in the country on an O-1 visa for "aliens of extraordinary ability."
The Daily Beast understands that an O-1 allows individuals to work for a number of different organisations provided they channel their work through one agent, while TMZ suggests that the professional troll’s new backers, “have agreed in principle to file the necessary paperwork.”
Immigration issues aside, it’s been a spectacularly bad week for Yiannopoulos, who lost a book deal and a national speaking role in addition to resigning from his gig at Breitbart, after he suggested that on occasions it was acceptable for adults to have sex with 13 year olds.
The extraordinary claim was made by Yiannopoulos during a videotaped interview in which he discussed how he himself was sexually abused by a priest at the age of 14.
The tape surfaced shortly after Larry Wilmore attacked him during an appearance on Bill Maher's show last week—in which Maher was accused by many of giving Yiannopoulos an easy ride and failing to seriously take him to task for his offensive comments, instead treating him largely as a comic turn.
However, in the wake of Yiannopoulos’s dramatic downfall this week, Maher sought to take credit for the events, saying, “What I think people saw was an emotionally needy Ann Coulter wannabe, trying to make a buck off of the left’s propensity for outrage. And by the end of the weekend, by dinnertime Monday, he’s dropped as a speaker at CPAC. Then he’s dropped by Breitbart, and his book deal falls through. As I say, sunlight is the best disinfectant. You’re welcome.”
Defending himself from claims of being an apologist for pedophilia, Yiannopoulos said in a statement that his comments were the "usual blend of British sarcasm, provocation and gallows humour," and added: "I will not apologize for dealing with my life experiences in the best way that I can, which is humour. No one can tell me or anyone else who has lived through sexual abuse how to deal with those emotions. But I am sorry to other abuse victims if my own personal way of dealing with what happened to me has hurt you.”
The 32-year-old wrote on Facebook: “I would like to restate my utter disgust at adults who sexually abuse minors.”