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Disgraced event promoter desperate to debate political commentator

May 6, 2020

Travis Pangburn is a Canadian event promoter with a focus on live debates. He organized a conference for New York in 2018 featuring speakers like Sam Harris, Maajid Nawaz, and Bari Weiss. However the speakers cancelled their appearances because of unpaid refunds and speaker fees. Prevailing evidence indicates that Pangburn cancelled the conference but refused to refund ticket holders. [1] [2]

Earlier this year Pangburn became focused on one particular speaker: Ben Shapiro. In February - out of the blue - Pangburn challenged the conservative pundit to a debate on the topic of circumcision. Although Shapiro is an Orthodox Jew, he seems to be a rather odd choice for a circumcision debate. He is a lawyer with a focus on current political issues. Although his wife is a physician, Shapiro himself has no medical background. Last year Shapiro asked then-Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang to explain his position on circumcision; [3] however that was a question that every reporter asked Yang at the time. Other than that interview, Shapiro has not said much of anything about the circumcision issue.

At any rate, Pangburn's first challenge to Shapiro three months ago was apparently ignored. [4] So the event promoter has stepped up his chest-beating. He's made four Facebook posts and a Youtube video in the past few days repeating his challenge. When his May 4 post was brought to our attention, [5] one of our admins posted a comment challenging Pangburn's citation of a particular anti-circumcision organization. The comment included an image promoting our Doctors Opposing Circumcision article, in which we document several DOC statements that are false, misleading, and potentially dangerous. [6]

A few hours later we found that the comment had been deleted. Apparently Pangburn is afraid that his fans might see credible evidence that counters his position. If that's the case, then it does explain why he would want to debate Shapiro rather than, say, a circumcision expert.

[1] Sam Harris: "A few thoughts on the imposion of Pangburn Philosophy";; November 16, 2018

[2] Ben Sixsmith; "The strange tale of Travis Pangburn and the 'IDW'"; Spectator USA; November 23, 2018

[3] Ben Shapiro; "Interview with Andrew Yang"; Ben Shapiro Show; May 12, 2019

[4] Travis Pangburn; "I Declare Ideological War on Ben Shapiro - Infant Circumcision"; The War of Ideas; February 12, 2020

[5] Travis Pangburn; Facebook post; May 4, 2020


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