UC Berkeley Gearing Up for Controversial Speaker Milo Yiannopoulos' Visit - NBC Bay Area
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UC Berkeley Gearing Up for Controversial Speaker Milo Yiannopoulos' Visit

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    Far-right commentator Milo Yiannopoulos, who was scheduled to speak Friday night at the University of California, Davis before violent protests broke out, is slated to speak in the Bay Area next month. Christie Smith reports. (Published Saturday, Jan. 14, 2017)

    Far-right figure Milo Yiannopoulos, who was scheduled to speak Friday night at UC Davis before protests broke out, is slated to speak in the Bay Area next month.

    Another round of protesters are expected to turn out in full force on Feb. 1 — the date of Yiannopoulos' sold-out Bay Area visit — to offer their strong opinions about the editor of right-wing Breitbart News.

    Yiannopoulos is banned from Twitter after piloting a harassment campaign against actress Leslie Jones. He has also been criticized for slander and defamation.

    "You could say it's free speech, but, at the same time, it's very hateful speech," UC Berkeley student Gino Gresh said of Yiannopoulos. "It does incite a lot of violence most of the time. He knows what he's doing. He knows what he's talking about. He knows how to get a rise out of people. He knows how to aggravate what he sees as the far left."

    The Berkeley College Republicans student group is the collective responsible for hosting Yiannopoulos in roughly two weeks. Jose Diaz, the head of that group, believes the conservative speaker's words could be inspiring.

    "It's going to allow us, once he departs, to hopefully pick that up and run with it a little bit to create some momentum so we can help effect some sort of change in creating a campus environment where free speech is tolerated," Diaz said.

    The Daily Californian reports that 12 university professors sent a letter to
    Chancellor Nicholas Dirks and asked that the university cancel Yiannopoulos' appearance.

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