No thanks! Speaker rejects Rutgers invitation after ‘anti-Islam’ uproar
NEW BRUNSWICK — Lisa Daftari has rejected Rutgers University's invitation to speak on campus in November and accused her alma mater of trying to save face.
Daftari was originally scheduled to speak tonight as part of the school's Undergraduate Academic Affairs speaker series on the subject of speech and to facilitate a conversation around the question of “how can we use our college campuses as a place of learning, thinking, and leadership rather than violence, hatred, and radicalism?"
The appearance was postponed last week by Rutgers without explanation after a student started an online petition accusing her of being an “Islamopobe" based on her comments during a speech before the Heritage Foundation. The student government also objected to her appearance.
University spokesman John Cramer on Monday told New Jersey 101.5 that Daftori was offered four dates in November to speak on campus. Daftari has turned down all the dates and will not be coming to Rutgers, according to a statement she provided to the Daily Targum.
“It was clear that the University unilaterally decided to cancel the event. To come back after the damage has been done to my reputation and suggest that this was some misunderstanding and to continue with the premise that the event was merely postponed, lacks the integrity and respect that I would have hoped for from my alma mater,” she said.
Cramer said on Tuesday that the university had no comment on Daftori's statement to the student newspaper and would not disclose the reason for the postponement.
Daftori has not yet returned several requests for comment.
The 2002 graduate of Rutgers is the founder of the website The Foreign Desk and appears on Fox News Channel.