Rutgers University is one of the oldest Universities in the United States and one of the nine colonial colleges created before the American Revolution. It was first chartered as Queens College in 1766 and renamed as Rutgers University in 1825 in honour Sir Colonel Henry Rutgers who according to the University Board epitomised ‘Christian values’. Reverend Jacob Rutsen Hardenberg, a Dutch Reformed Minister was responsible for establishing the college.
It was first started by Ministers of Dutch Reformed Church as a training college for people who wanted to become ministers within the Church. The original purpose of the college was “to educate youth in language, liberal, the divinity, and useful arts and sciences”. Since 1795 Rutgers University Presidents were clergy associated with Christian denominations such as Dutch Reformed, Presbyterian, and German Reformed. The University depended on slaves to build its campuses and was financed by the sale of slaves to fund its existence.
In 2016, the University revealed research findings that stated “some of the institution’s founders as slave owners and the displacement of Native Americans who once occupied land that was later transferred to the college.” According to Craig Steven Wilder, Rev. Jacob Hardenberg and Frederick Frelinghuysen, the University’s first tutor were both slave owners. Col Henry Rutgers, himself came from a family not only owned slaves but also traded them and so did many members of his family. According to an article in the University archives a member of Rutgers family three slaves were convicted of conspiracy – one was hanged, one was burned and one was transported and the white man who allegedly incited the slaves was executed and hung on public display on the shoreline of Rutgers family property.
The trustees and faculty members of Rutgers University founded the New Jersey Colonisation Society in 1924 which advocated the use of black people to missions in Africa for colonisation purposes. Wesleyan’s President Robert Frisk called, “a passage of civilisation and salvation into the interior of that dark continent!”. The Presbyterian church justified colonisation of Africa on both economic and religious grounds.
More recently Rutgers University employs faculty who are bigoted, racist and Hindu haters. Despite multiple complaints against Hindu hating Associate Professor Audrey Truschke, the University has not only defended the Professor but also awarded her with the Board of Trustees Research Fellowship for Scholarly Excellence Award for her bigoted and racist works. Truschke’s book Aurangzeb: The Life and Legacy of India’s Most Controversial King paint the brutal, barbaric King as a gentle soul who loved Hindus despite proof of Hindu victims of Aurangzeb’s Islamic reign running into millions. The University is also complicit in defining Hinduism for Hindus and Hinduism being different from Hindutva. Rutgers University was also one of the 21 Universities that participated in Hindu bashing Holi against Hindutva campaign started by Yale University students. Audrey Trusckhe is also an advisory member for anti-Hindu Students against Hindutva Ideology (SAHI) started by Shreeya Singh and Ziad Ahmed with financial backing given by Equality Labs.
In 2018, Rutgers University ran a campaign to end hate against all religions. It proves that it was mere lip service as they allow and award a faculty member to spew venom and hatred Hindus.