The most surprising thing about the cowardly attack on Salman Rushdie at the Chautauqua Institution in New York is that it has taken more than 30 years for a fired-up fundamentalist to get to Rushdie. Since Ayatollah Khomeini issued his fatwa in February 1989, ordering all Muslims to kill Rushdie, the list of people attacked or killed for their involvement with “The Satanic Verses” has grown long and become blood-soaked.

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Jacob Mchangama is the Founder and Executive Director of The Future of Free Speech. He is also a research professor at Vanderbilt University and a Senior Fellow at The Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE).