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Islam critic denied honorary degree due to petition pressure

- The Washington Times - Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Brandeis University administrators caved to petitioners and denied a woman an honorary degree, after critics pointed out she made comments that were critical of Islam.

Former Dutch Parliament member Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who was born in Somalia and was in the running for an honorary degree from the Massachusetts college, told Reason Magazine in 2007 that "we are at war with Islam" and that Muslims ought to be "defeated," the Associated Press reported.

That caused students and faculty to start an online petition demanding the Massachusetts university change its mind about the degree, which it planned to give to Ms. Ali at the May 18 commencement. Roughly 85 signed the petition, and another 350 signed a separate letter asking that Ms. Ali retract her 2007 remark.

She declined to comment, but the university issued a statement saying it can't ignore the fact that she made remarks "that are inconsistent with Brandeis University's core values," AP reported.

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