Now to look at each one in more detail, though not calmly.
Protests from “influential Muslim clerics” in India have prompted the organizers of a literary festival in Jaipur to take Salman Rushdie’s name off the list of speakers. He was scheduled to speak at three events during the five day festival.
The BBC explains in the way it invariably does.
Mr Rushdie sparked anger in the Muslim world with his book The Satanic Verses, which many regard as blasphemous.
No he didn’t. Mr Rushdie wrote a novel. Some people chose to become enraged about the novel and its author. He did not “spark” anything, nor did he do anything wrong. Many regard many things as blasphemous. If we take them seriously then they win.
The Times Of India newspaper reported that the government of Rajasthan state – where Jaipur is located – had persuaded the organisers to “ask Mr Rushdie… to call off his visit”.
Bullies 1, literature 0.
Last week, the Darul Uloom Deoband seminary’s vice-chancellor, Maulana Abul Qasim Nomani, called on the government to block Mr Rushdie’s visit by “cancelling his visa” as he “had annoyed the religious sentiments of Muslims in the past”.
“In case of no response from the government, the Darul Uloom Deoband will take appropriate action,” Mr Nomani said.
Bullies 1, literature 0, government 0, secularism 0, freedom of expression 0.