Conservative commentator Milo Yiannopoulos will bring his uncensored talking points and a bit of controversy to Ohio University when he visits Athens Friday.
The event, hosted by the OU College Republicans, will take place at Nelson Commons starting at 7 p.m. OUCR President David Parkhill said he has been looking forward to the event.
"He talks a lot about free speech, and he's a prominent conservative," Parkhill said. "I think it will be a fun event, and since he reached out to us, we were all for it.
The Multicultural Action Coalition will be hosting an event at the same time called "Pride Pachanga" at the Living Learning Center. Gabriela Godinez-Feregrino, a junior studying creative writing and integrated media, is one of the students who planned the counter-event.
"We decided to (have the event) before the election, but because of the election, we knew there would be really high emotions," she said. "We wanted to do some sort of protest, but not in a stereotypical protest-y way."
The event will include members of the LGBT Center, Women's Center and Black Student Union, among others.
"The idea is for different student groups to table in order to share whatever it is they want to share about their group," delfin bautista, the director of the LGBT Center who uses a lowercase spelling of their name and they/them pronouns, said. "Whether it be information, crafting or food, they can just share who they are. (The event) is also intended to be a dance party and celebration of diversity."
Godinez-Feregino said the event was the best way to stand against Yiannopoulos' rhetoric instead of protests outside his speech.
"It legitimizes him," she said, as the explanation for why she was not protesting. "He's a joke, and having a rebuttal to his words makes it sound like he has a solid argument, and he doesn't."
Ohio University students interviewed by The Post did not have strong feelings either way, for the most part. Many had not even heard of Yiannopoulos or were aware he was coming to Athens.
Mary Puzder, a sophomore studying journalism, believed it was a good thing Yiannopoulos was coming to OU.
"He's coming here to a liberal school, and he's not a liberal speaker," she said. "I think people could broaden their horizons by listening."
Despite this, Pudzer said she probably would not be going to the event. Another sophomore, Billie Frank, was more reserved about Yiannopoulos coming.
"I'm a political science major, so I think free speech is more than welcome on campus," she said. "However, I think his brand promotes a lot of hate speech. ... maybe the College Republicans should have brought in somebody that has a more respectful reputation."