Cancel news about cancellation — Rutgers inviting Fox guest Lisa Daftari after all
NEW BRUNSWICK — Rutgers University College Republicans and several other campus groups have started an online petition in support of Lisa Daftari’s appearance on campus — and the school has offered her four dates in November to speak.
Daftari's presentation was originally scheduled for Tuesday, but postponed after a student who called her an “Islamopobe" started an online petition. Objections were also voiced by the student government association about university funds being used to pay Daftari.
“Islamic terror takes its guidance and teachings from the Quran, which is Sharia law," that petition quotes Daftari as saying. “When you go to the mosque and you’re part of a community, and you want to feel important and relevant, and want to give back to the cause — [ISIS] recruits you. You say I can be an ISIS wife.”
Rutgers confirmed to New Jersey 101.5 that she was paid $5,000 as a speaking fee from a privately endowed lecture fund.
Young Americans for Liberty-Rutgers University, The Centurion and Young Americans for Freedom-Rutgers University co-sponsored another petition, seeking to let Daftari speak.
"We believe that the University's decision to cancel her talk was cowardly and betrays the true purpose of university: to expose students to new ideas and knowledge," the petition read.
Rutgers spokesman John Cramer told New Jersey 101.5 that Daftari was welcome to speak on campus, and the school's Undergraduate Academic Affairs offered Daftari four dates in November — Wednesday, Nov. 14, Monday, Nov. 19, Monday, Nov. 26 and Wednesday, Nov. 28.
"The university’s position on the free exchange of ideas is clear; the ability to respectfully present, discuss and debate matters in the public interest is at the heart of what every great university does. Such free and respectful discussion is fundamental to Rutgers’ core values and is practiced every day at Rutgers," Hogan said.
Hogan did not disclose a reason for the postponement of the original Oct. 16 date.
"I am certain that in the course of your comments and follow-up questions from our students, your views will be fully articulated and will generate respectful and vigorous discussion both by those who agree and those who disagree with those views," UAA Vice Chancellor Ben Sifuentes-Jáuregui wrote in his invitation.
Daftari is a 2002 Rutgers graduate born to Iranian Jewish parents and was originally scheduled to speak as part of the Rutgers Undergraduate Academic Affairs (UAA) Speaker Series. She is founder of the website The Foreign Desk and a Fox News guest.
Daftari 's speech was to "focus on free speech” and facilitate a conversation around the question “how can we use our college campuses as a place of learning, thinking, and leadership rather than violence, hatred, and radicalism," followed by a Q&A session, according to he UAA.