Steve Bannon New Yorker Festival interview pulled following backlash & cancellations

New Yorker editor David Remnick released a lengthy statement on Twitter explaining his decision to invite- and then disinvite- Bannon

On Twitter, many praised the Hollywood figures and others - including New Yorker staffers - for rejecting the plan to include Bannon.

Jimmy Fallon, Jim Carrey, Judd Apatow, Patton Oswalt and John Mulaney were all scheduled to appear, but one by one they began to make it clear that if Bannon were the headliner, they wouldn't be showing up at all. "See if Milo Yiannopoulos is free?"

Shortly thereafter, Remnick issued a memo to his staff, saying that he had changed his mind and chose to drop Bannon from the speakers list.

Though Remick is no fan of the Trump administration and planned on grilling Bannon, the decision was made to disinvite him due to the number of celebrities who began canceling.

Remnick said that interviewing Bannon wasn't the same as endorsing him. "The audience itself, by its presence, puts a certain pressure on a conversation that an interview alone doesn't do".

For anyone who wonders what normalisation of bigotry looks like, I'd argue first consider that Steve Bannon was chief strategist under the current president. In a statement released on Twitter, David Remnick, the magazine's editor, said he had changed his mind after facing criticism on social media.

What happened with Bannon and the New Yorker Festival, though it may appear to be just another digital-age dust-up, is part of a much deeper media problem: the normalization of people and ideas that deserve only scorn - all done in the name of understanding and challenging them.

"Bannon? And me? On the same program?" asked Carey. This is PT Barnum level horses.

The announcement did not go over well. "The moment he was invited he won, whatever the outcome", she said, noting that Bannon can now "add a point to his culture war scoreboard".

Quoting the magazine's founder, James Wilson, Beddoes described how its longstanding mission was to take part in "a severe contest between intelligence, which presses forward, and an unworthy, timid ignorance obstructing our progress". "It's obvious that no matter how tough the questioning, Bannon is not going to burst into tears and change his view of the world".

- Chelsea Clinton (@ChelseaClinton) September 3, 2018Hey, New Yorker, I'm happy to come see Steve Bannon speak at your festival if Robert Muller is asking the questions.

Bannon, who was to headline the prestigious festival, denounced Remnick in a statement. The New Yorker's editor, David Remnick, was originally slated to interview Mr. Bannon onstage.

He added that the magazine had interviewed Bannon before and would do so again if the opportunity arose "in a more traditionally journalistic setting" rather than on stage.

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