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Last week, the white supremacist Milo Yiannopoulos, notorious for his misogynistic, transphobic, homophobic, and racist rants, announced he had signed a $250,000 book deal with the Simon and Schuster imprint Threshold Editions.
While publishers undeniably have the right to acquire and profit from any book they wish, they also bear an essential responsibility to promote civil discourse and reject hate speech that is often a precursor to violence. Even as publishers tout the diversity of voices they publish, they should not enable the work of a writer whose diatribes bludgeon women, transgender people, queer people, people of color, or anyone else.
We at Lambda Literary stand with the diverse writers and readers who believe that for a publisher to give this writer money and a megaphone is an affront to the values we all share. Furthermore, if Yiannopoulos’s forthcoming book, Dangerous, contains the same hateful rhetoric that got him banned from Twitter and earned him widespread condemnation—including from the LGBTQ community he claims to be part of—then Lambda Literary will have to condemn the work as hostile to our mission of advocacy for LGBTQ literature and affirmation of LGBTQ lives.
Lambda Literary calls on readers and reviewers to ignore his book. Instead we encourage everyone to read these recently released and forthcoming books that illuminate the LGBTQ experience with intelligence and compassion: