Why J.K. Rowling Has Been Dragged Into The Salman Rushdie Stabbing Controversy

Salman Rushdie was the victim of a horrific stabbing attack on August 12, 2022. The BBC reported that the novelist was giving a speech at the Chautauqua Institution in New York State when a man rushed onto the stage and attacked him. Rushdie, who sustained multiple stab wounds, was flown by helicopter to undergo surgery at a trauma center in Erie, Pennsylvania. He was "hospitalized with serious injuries" and placed on a ventilator. The next day, British-American writer Aatish Taseer announced in a since-deleted tweet (via The AP) that the author was "off the ventilator and talking (and joking)."

Per The New Times, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini issued a fatwa against Rushdie in 1989, following the release of his book "The Satanic Verses." The then-Supreme Leader of Iran offered Muslims a reward of "several million dollars" in return for killing the Indian-born novelist. Rushdie immediately went into hiding, where he remained for the next decade, regularly moving from one secret location to another under the protection of the British police 24-7.

Rushdie returned to public life in 1998 after the Iranian government renounced the death sentence. However, the fatwa remained in place. The Guardian reports that Hadi Matar from Fairview, New Jersey, was arrested and charged with attempted murder. Matar pleaded not guilty on August 13 and was remanded in custody after being refused bail. Matar faces up to 25 years if convicted. The literary world publicly condemned Salman Rushdie's stabbing, including J.K. Rowling, who's now been dragged into the controversy.

J.K. Rowling received death threat over Salman Rushdie tweet

J.K. Rowling was one of many who took to social media after Salman Rushdie's stabbing. "Feeling very sick right now. Let him be ok," Rowling tweeted following news of the attack. She subsequently retweeted commentary and reports from others. Then, Rowling posted screenshots of a terrifying threat that she'd received. "Don't worry, you are next," the message read. The BBC reported that the menacing missive came from a Pakistan-based account that had also tweeted praise for Rushdie's attacker, Hadi Matar, and exalted his actions.

Rowling was flooded with messages of encouragement and concern from her followers. "To all sending supportive messages. Thank you. Police are involved (were already involved on other threats)," she tweeted. Like Rushdie, Rowling has had her share of controversial moments. The Wrap reports that Rowling has experienced intense backlash over her anti-trans stance. Twitter was forced to remove a video by an activist who alluded to murdering Rowling. "J.K. I hope you fit in a hearse" was one of Faye Fadam's lyrics. "As I kill (Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminists)" was another.

According to US Weekly, the "Harry Potter" creator has also come under fire for being unabashedly #TeamMadonna, lambasted for defending Serena Williams, and accused of cultural appropriation. Rowling took yet another blow after she claimed people are "obsessed" with being thin and criticized the "skinny-obsessed world."