The Harvard Crimson men’s soccer team was having a banner season. With two games to go, it was well on its way to winning the Ivy League–and with it, a slot in the NCAA tournament. However, that came to an abrupt and screeching halt on Thursday, when school officials discovered that a number of men’s soccer players had been creating “scouting reports” about the perceived sexual appeal of their counterparts on the women’s soccer team for the better part of four seasons.
Now, who would have a problem with this? Well, apparently alt-right hero Milo Yiannopoulos does. Milo, who is supposedly the tech editor for Breitbart but is really a highly-paid troll, seems to have the idea that a school has no right to snuff out rape culture.
Last week, Harvard’s student newspaper, The Harvard Crimson, discovered that the 2012 men’s soccer team created a list that ranked women’s soccer recruits on their physical appearance and potential sexual appeal. When school president Drew Faust learned about this, she ordered Harvard’s in-house legal team to review the matter.
The investigation found that “scouting reports” continued to be circulated for some time after the 2012 season, as late as 2016. When questioned about it, the players were initially not honest about what happened. When athletic director Bob Scalise read the results of the investigation, he struck fast and hard. He ordered the team to forfeit its remaining two games and withdraw from postseason consideration. Faust fully supported this decision, saying that it was the only acceptable response for a “completely unacceptable” situation.
Watch more coverage from WCVB-TV in Boston here.
Yiannopoulos was speaking at Ohio State on Friday night when audience member asked him about the situation at Harvard. Watch Milo’s response here.
Yiannopoulos was dumbfounded that the Crimson men’s soccer team was being punished for “locker room talk.” From where he was sitting, they were merely talking the way most men talk in private, and it was “deeply psychologically dysfunctional” to force them to act differently in public. He didn’t think it was a big deal for men to be “visual animals” who look at women and think “they might like to rape them sometimes.”
Yiannopoulos asked the audience if it was appropriate to drop the hammer on a team’s season for this sort of behavior. He then answered his own question–“Of course it f*cking isn’t!” Why?
“You cannot deny human nature. You cannot deny people’s natural instincts and impulses. Men like to look at things.”
Yiannopoulos argued that Harvard and other universities had no right to “punish boys for being boys,” and called for them to “get out of people’s bedrooms” lest they see enrollments drop and donations dry up.
Okay, Milo. I’ll play. The culture that was uncovered on the men’s soccer team is exactly the kind of mentality that leads to sexual assault on campus. If you seriously believe that this is merely a case of “boys being boys,” perhaps you should take another look at the Brock Turner case. You may recall that Turner texted pictures of his victim’s breasts to his fellow men’s swimmers at Stanford. If Turner thought it was even remotely acceptable to text a naked woman’s breasts for any reason, then there was something rotten in the state of the Stanford men’s swim team.
You say that Harvard is trying to force the men’s soccer players to deny their nature? Well, if they don’t have the ability to express their feelings about women in a respectful manner, you have to wonder how they managed to get into Harvard–or any college worth its salt, for that matter–in the first place. And if you think this was “locker room talk,” perhaps you should listen to the NFL and NBA players who declared they would never, ever talk about women in this way in private.
What happened at Harvard was not “boys being boys.” It was rape culture–period, full stop. Anyone who suggests otherwise might as well sound like this.
I see nothing wrong with Harvard declaring in no uncertain terms that this is flat-out unacceptable. Indeed, if I were Faust and Scalise, I would ban those who took part in this debauchery and lied about it from ever suiting up for Harvard again, and possibly put them through the student disciplinary process. I don’t think it would be out of line to sit the team down for at least the 2017 season to make sure this mentality is completely rooted out.
But then again, considering that Yiannopoulos was banished from Twitter for leading the disgraceful trolling of Leslie Jones, we shouldn’t expect him to have any sort of standards. Apparently Milo hasn’t learned his lesson after being shredded on Nightline in September. Maybe it’s time to give Milo another lesson–politely, of course. Let him know what you think of his idiocy on his Facebook page.
(featured image courtesy Yiannopoulos’ Facebook)