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Podcast Movement Apologizes For 'Harm' Caused By Ben Shapiro's Presence At Convention

Shapiro: 'Literally shaking...this is erasure’

Podcast Movement, which bills itself as the “world’s largest community of podcasters” and has hosted annual conventions for the industry since 2014, apologized for allowing conservative publisher Daily Wire to purchase a booth at their Dallas convention following an appearance by Ben Shapiro.

The organization, which began with a Kickstarter in 2014, said they would take “full responsibility for the harm done” by the outspoken commentator. “There’s no way around it: we agreed to sell The Daily Wire a first-time booth based on the company’s large presence in podcasting,” they wrote.

On Twitter, employees of the Daily Wire were quick to parody the apology by submitting anecdotes of the “trauma” Shapiro caused them during their employment. “Thank you for this apology. I have frequently been traumatized by Ben’s presence in the office so I can only imagine how the people at the convention felt,” Daily Wire political commentator Matt Walsh wrote before adding that he was praying for those harmed at the convention.

The apology also attracted the attention of at least one member of Congress. Lauren Boebert from Colorado noted that the organization was fine with taking the Daily Wire’s money, but the problem was that Ben Shapiro, the publication’s co-founder, had decided to show up. “So you were fine with taking money from The Daily Wire as long as it stayed hush. Interesting. Also, if the mere presence of Ben Shapiro somehow ‘harms’ you, you need more help than you can find on any self help podcast,” she replied.

Liberal commentator Yashar Ali also criticized the apology which some characterized as a public relations stunt. “Was he wielding a machete and threatening people?” he asked. “You sold his company a booth at your expo, of course he’s going to stop by! This is so silly,” he added.

Shapiro, however, is no stranger to unexpected backlash to his presence and openly mocked the apology from his Twitter account.

In 2017, the University of California at Berkely spent an estimated $600,000 to “put the campus on virtual lockdown” while he spoke at the school, according to local media reports.

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