The annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) is meeting this week in Maryland, and is now looking for a last-minute keynote speaker to replace their previous speaker who was disinvited after a leaked video showed him defending relationships between “young boys and older men,” according to Politico.
Initially CPAC had given the keynote slot to a gay senior editor at Breitbart, but has since rescinded the invitation following the video, in which the Breitbart editor issues a defense of sexual relations between younger guys and older men, using his own experiences to argue his point.
“We get hung up on this sort of child abuse stuff to the point where we are heavily policing consensual adults,” the gay editor said in the video.
“In the homosexual world, particularly, some of those relationships between younger boys and older men — the sort of ‘coming of age’ relationship — those relationships in which those older men help those young boys discover who they are and give them security and safety and provide them with love and a reliable, sort of rock, where they can’t speak to their parents,” he continued.
The ex-keynote speaker then went to describe his sexual relationship with a Catholic priest when he was a 14-year-old, according to The Blaze, and attempted to downplay the presence of pedophilia between him and the priest.
“But it wasn’t molestation,” the gay provocateur told comedian Joe Rogan in the video. “I’m grateful for Father Michael. I wouldn’t give nearly such good head if it wasn’t for him.”
Matt Schlapp, a chairman of the group which sponsors CPAC, released a statement Monday afternoon in regards to the gay editor’s invitation to speak at the conference, inviting him to “further address these disturbing comments.”
“Due to the revelation of an offensive video in the past 24 hours condoning pedophilia, the American Conservative Union (ACU) has decided to rescind the invitation,” Schlapp said.
After the controversy erupted the Breitbart editor attempted to partially walk back his previous statements saying on Facebook "I do not support pedophilia. Period. It is a vile and disgusting crime, perhaps the very worst. There are selectively edited videos doing the rounds, as part of a co-ordinated effort to discredit me from establishment Republicans, that suggest I am soft on the subject," he wrote. "If it somehow comes across (through my own sloppy phrasing or through deceptive editing) that I meant any of the ugly things alleged, let me set the record straight: I am completely disgusted by the abuse of children."
But he also defended some of his other statements saying
"I *did* joke about giving better head as a result of clerical sexual abuse committed against me when I was a teen. If I choose to deal in an edgy way on an internet livestream with a crime I was the victim of that's my prerogative. I did say that there are relationships between younger men and older men that can help a young gay man escape from a lack of support or understanding at home. That's perfectly true and every gay man knows it. But I was not talking about anything illegal and I was not referring to pre-pubescent boys. I shouldn't have used the word 'boy' when I talked about those relationships between older men and younger gay men. (I was talking about my own relationship when I was 17 with a man who was 29. The age of consent in the UK is 16.) That was a mistake. Gay men often use the word 'boy' when they refer to consenting adults. I understand that heterosexual people might not know that, so it was a sloppy choice of words that I regret."
Following the statement removing the invitation for the Breitbart editor to speak at the conference, however, Schlapp stood by his initial invitation in comments to the Hollywood Reporter.
“An epidemic of speech suppression has taken over college campuses,” Schlapp told the Reporter. He went on to say that the Breitbart editor has “exposed the liberal thuggery,” and that “free speech includes hearing [his] important perspective.”