Grass Valley, CA — Given the recent attack on the French Magazine Charlie Hebdo by Islamic militants which killed 12 people, famous and formerly in hiding author Salman Rushie expressed concern for the safety of Grass Valley’s 150 year old, satirical newspaper The Union.
“What is freedom of expression? Without the freedom to offend, it ceases to exist,” said Salman Rushdie, “and the Union’s outspoken satire is a prime target for those wishing to silence one of America’s oldest critical voices.”
The publication of Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses in September 1988 caused immediate controversy in the Islamic world because of what was seen by some to be an irreverent depiction of the prophet Muhammad. A bounty was offered for Rushdie’s death, and he was thus forced to live under police protection for several years.
Reaction was swift from the Union’s chief competitor.
“We, like Mr. Rushdie, are very concerned about the security in and around the Union,” said Nevada County Gish Gallop President Louis “Lou” LaPlante. “Given the recent attack on Charlie Hebdo and the Union’s crisp and dry satire format, we must be vigilant and unafraid of intimidation from the dark forces that wish to silence us.”
At the time of this writing, it is unclear that the Union’s chief writing powerhouse R.L. Crabb will need extra protection. (Note: Gish Gallop has beefed up security around house cartoonist Thos Nasty)
In Maryland, privacy advocate Kirby Delauter issued a statement.
“This is what happens when you use someone’s name without their permission,” said an angry Mr. Delauter. “My privacy ends where yours begins. I hope the Union gets that now.”
This is developing story. Please check back for updates as they come in.