A decision made by the Conservative Political Action Convention’s leadership has some questioning the theme of this year’s event: “American Uncanceled,” a reference to a growing societal cancer known as “cancel culture.” After inviting Young Pharoah, a well-known right-leaning YouTuber, to participate in a panel on the black community and the Republican Party’s outreach efforts, they rescinded his invitation after it was revealed that he allegedly made anti-Semitic comments.
The controversy arose after Media Matters, a watchdog organization that focuses on conservative media, published a report detailing some of Young Pharoah’s comments regarding Judaism and the Jewish community. In one instance, he tweeted: “THERE IS NO #HISTORICAL OR #SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE PROVING THE EXISTENCE OF #JEWS OR #JUDAISM… ITS ALL A COMPLETE #LIE. … COMPLETELY MADE UP FOR #POLITICAL GAIN.”
The YouTuber also allegedly claimed, “all the censorship & pedophilia on social media is being done by Israeli Jews.”
Young Pharaoh has also entertained several conspiracy theories including the Pizzagate narrative, which suggests that a D.C. pizzeria is a front for a pedophile ring. He has also promoted the notion that the COVID-19 vaccination alters people’s genes.
After the report was circulated on social media, CPAC decided to cancel Young Pharaoh’s invitation. “We have just learned that someone we invited to CPAC has expressed reprehensible views that have no home with our conference or our organization,” they wrote on Twitter. “The individual will not be participating at our conference.”
Young Pharaoh on Tuesday published a video on YouTube explaining his side of the story, criticizing the organization for canceling him despite claiming to oppose cancel culture. He claimed that the allegations against him are false and that his detractors are misinterpreting his words.
Black Guns Matter founder Maj Toure, who will be moderating the panel, took responsibility for inviting Young Pharaoh to participate. He tweeted: “Everyone, I invited YP to be on my panel at @CPAC. The fault falls squarely ON ME. Let’s use this as a moment to address inclusion, dialogue and straight talk and NOT go back to our respective corners. THATS what the ops want. This was ALL MY FAULT.”
Everyone, I invited YP to be on my panel at @CPAC.
The fault falls squarely ON ME.
Let’s use this as a moment to address inclusion, dialogue and straight talk and NOT go back to our respective corners.
THATS what the ops want.
This was ALL MY FAULT.
— Maj Toure (@MAJTOURE) February 23, 2021
CPAC’s decision elicited a lively debate on Twitter with people agreeing and disagreeing with the move. Those who agree with CPAC’s argue that while it is important to promote free speech, organizations can choose who they allow to associate with. They point out that the YouTuber’s remarks were extreme enough to warrant the decision.
On the other side, people disagreeing with CPAC’s action argue that the organization is violating the spirit of free speech and that they should have allowed Young Pharaoh to voice his opinions on the panel. They asserted that rescinding his invitation was tantamount to the type of cancel culture that the left engages in and that if people disagreed with the YouTuber’s views, they should refute them with more speech.
This is one of those issues that isn’t exactly easy to judge. People on both sides make valid points and, like Toure indicated, it is a conversation we must continue to have on the right, especially since the far left is intent on destroying the notion of free speech at all costs. Those who value free speech should be the ones responsible for determining where and when it applies.
It is also important that we don’t allow this situation to distract from the panel, which will feature Breitbart radio host Sonnie Johnson, Congressional candidate Angela Stanton King, #WalkAway’s Shemeka Michelle, and Rich Valdes. The topics they will be discussing are important to the future of the conservative movement and the Republican Party.
In another tweet, Toure promised that they are “STILL going to address these HARD topics” at CPAC.
Be clear tho. We’re STILL going to address these HARD topics at @CPAC.
Including REAL Black voices and how we reach the community that wants to be aligned with liberty and conservative values.
Hard for some, but needed.
The panel is Sunday at 2.30 on the main stage.
— Maj Toure (@MAJTOURE) February 23, 2021