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For Roxane Gay, Simon & Schuster Canceling Milo Yiannopoulos’ Book At This Stage Is Too Little, Too Late

roxane gay

Back in January, feminist writer Roxanne Gay pulled her latest book, How to Be Heard, from her publisher, Simon & Schuster, because they were also giving a platform to known Bigot-of-All-Trades Milo Yiannopoulous. Lately, everyone (except for maybe Bill Maher) is starting to realize that Yiannopoulos is a liability, and are cutting ties with him, including Simon & Schuster. But for Gay, it’s too little, too late.

According to Mediaite, the publisher has indeed canceled plans to publish Yiannopoulos’ book, but they only did so yesterday, and only after “videos of the Breitbart editor appearing to defend pedophilia and pederasty gained traction online.”

Gay noticed that, saying on her Tumblr that “When his comments about pedophilia/pederasty came to light, Simon & Schuster realized it would cost them more money to do business with Milo than he could earn for them.”

What’s disappointing is that this is the line in the sand. He can say what he likes about his fellow gays, or about transgender people, or black people, or women, and that’s fine. Who cares about that? But now that little boys are in danger, now something needs to be done about this menace. This is not to say that we shouldn’t care about the safety and welfare of children. Rather, that it’s disheartening that for all these companies now dumping Yiannopoulous like a hot potato, that the welfare of those other groups matters so little. But OMG, the children.

In fact, it seems as though Simon and Schuster not only has little regard for those other marginalized groups, but has gone out of its way to punish one of their black, female authors for speaking up about Yiannopoulos, even as they now distance themselves from him.

Gay describes how the publisher, before canceling Yiannopoulos’ book, added insult to injury with regard to her protest:

After I pulled my book, they changed the release date of Dangerous from March to June 13, the day my next book, Hunger, comes out. I said nothing because I was neither threatened nor concerned but it did reinforce for me that this was not a company I wanted to do business with. My protest stands.

She has since clarified her feelings toward the company on Twitter:

Meanwhile, in addition to having his book canceled, the Conservative Political Action Conference has disinvited him from speaking, and now he’s resigned from Breitbart, supposedly to “do right by them” by distancing himself (likely before they can disassociate themselves and foist even more embarrassment on him). Yet, he still talks as though he’s won. In an era of “alternative facts,” this is not surprising. It’s wrong, but not surprising.

(image via Eva Blue/Flickr)

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Teresa Jusino (she/her) is a native New Yorker and a proud Puerto Rican, Jewish, bisexual woman with ADHD. She's been writing professionally since 2010 and was a former TMS assistant editor from 2015-18. Now, she's back as a contributing writer. When not writing about pop culture, she's writing screenplays and is the creator of your future favorite genre show. Teresa lives in L.A. with her brilliant wife. Her other great loves include: Star Trek, The Last of Us, anything by Brian K. Vaughan, and her Level 5 android Paladin named Lal.