- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 27, 2017

A former professor is remaining unapologetic after she was fired from Essex County College in Newark, New Jersey, following her heated on-air interview with Fox News Tucker Carlson earlier this month.

Lisa Durden appeared on News One with Roland Martin Monday after her firing made national headlines.

“I wasn’t there to play games, I was there to take a bite out of crime,” she said of her Fox News interview. “When a black woman’s on television who is direct, who is aggressive, we’re ‘angry.’ Well, when Jeanine Pirro’s on TV pointing and screaming and yelling, she’s ‘intelligent.’ ” And when Nancy Grace is coming on television, she’s ‘intelligent.’ … Why can’t I come on there and be aggressive and talk in the same vein as any expert in the fields of pop culture, politics and social issues.”

Ms. Durden was suspended two days after her Fox News appearance but was fired following a public meeting with school officials last week. In her Fox News interview, the then-adjunct professor defended a Black Lives Matter group’s decision to host a blacks-only Memorial Day celebration in New York City.

“Boo hoo hoo, you white people are angry because you couldn’t use your white privilege card to get invited to the Black Lives Matter’s all-black Memorial Day Celebration,” Ms. Durden told Mr. Carlson, who called her views “separatist” and divisive.

Essex County College President Anthony Munroe said Monday that the school was “immediately inundated” with complaints about the interview, and officials made the decision to sever ties with Ms. Durden.

“The character of this institution mandates that we embrace diversity, inclusion, and unity. Racism cannot be fought with more racism,” he explained.

On Monday, Ms. Durden suggested the college was lying about the complaints.

“No, I’m not going to [apologize],” she said.

Ms. Durden’s attorney, Leslie Farber, told NJ.com that they might have a legal case against Essex County College.

“I believe their first suspending and then firing her was directly because of her appearing on the Tucker Carlson TV show, and is a violation of her federal and state constitutional rights to free speech,” Ms. Farber said.

“I happen to agree” with Ms. Farber, Ms. Durden said Monday.

Asked if she is considering taking legal action against her former employer, she replied, “I’m open for whatever.”

A petition demanding Ms. Durden be reinstated gathered nearly 1,800 signatures as of noon Tuesday.

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