Planned Ayers Talk a No-Go at U. Nebraska

School rescinds Nov. 15 invite under fire from donors, pols
By Gabriel Winant,  Newser User
Posted Oct 20, 2008 9:00 AM CDT
University of Nebraska-Lincoln Chancellor Harvey Perlman speaks during a press conference, Oct. 15, 2007, in Lincoln.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Though the invitation went out months ago, recent protests from politicians, donors and the online community led the University of Nebraska to pull a speaking invitation to William Ayers, the former radical agitator and current Chicago academic who’s become a talking point in John McCain’s criticisms of Barack Obama. The university says it cancelled Ayers’ engagement “for safety reasons," the Los Angeles Times reports.

“Bill Ayers is a well-known radical who should never have been invited to the University of Nebraska. Our citizens are clearly outraged and want action,” Republican Gov. Ben Heineman said. Professors warn that canceling a speech for political reasons resembles censorship, and hurts the university’s academic reputation.