The UK Independence Party (UKIP) has selected YouTuber Sargon of Akkad to be a candidate in the European Parliament election. Carl Benjamin, who goes by Sargon of Akkad on YouTube was selected from a pool of “190 potential candidates” according to comments from UKIP’s leader, Gerard Batten. Additionally, Mr. Batten cites Sargon’s selection for candidacy as “UKIP’s priority to have MEPs who will fight to make Brexit happen.”. Mr. Benjamin has been an outspoken critic of the European Union and supporter of Brexit, main traits of UKIP.
However, Mr. Benjamin’s candidacy has not come without controversy. In 2016, Sargon told Labor Party MP Jess Phillips that he would “I wouldn’t even rape you, Jess Phillips.” Mr. Benjamin, after critics brought it up after announcing his candidacy, responded to the critics by saying “It’s ok to joke about rape.” Even so, he defended the comments on his gab account stating “I STAND BY EVERY WORD!”, posting a video by Sky News.
Additionally, the YouTuber has caught flak for his use of the N-word in his videos. The campaign group, Hope not Hate, condemned the YouTuber for a video he used several slurs in, including the N-word. YouTube deleted the video in question for “violating YouTube’s policy on hate speech.”, according to the Independent. Mr. Benjamin told Sky News he was “not really interested in discussing any of these comments”. He suggested those offended by the statements should “go and have a cry”. He furthered this by saying he “I find racist jokes funny”.
UKIP’s Internet Personalities
Indeed, Sargon of Akkad is not the only online personality that has joined UKIP. YouTuber and Editor at large at Infowars, Paul Joseph Watson, talked about him joining UKIP and why he joined to his 1.6 million subscribers in a 2018 video. As well, YouTuber Mark Meechan, going by Count Dankula on YouTube, also joined UKIP. He announced his joining of UKIP on his YouTube channel with nearly 500 thousand subscribers. The parties inclusion of popular internet personalities signals a rising internet presence and a unique advantage in the coming elections.
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