Richard Dawkins – Scientist, bestselling author of “God Delusion” and the world’s foremost atheist blasted at the Jaipur Literataure Festival “lamentable disgrace” of Salma Rushdie’s enforced absence. He also launched into a broadside against the “virus of faith” and said he looked forward to the “complete death of organised religion” in his lifetime.
“Far too much sympathy is shown to people who claim to be motivated by religion – sympathy that would not be shown to people acting from mere prejudice.I have a problem with Santa Claus and Ruldolph the rednosed reindeer, but I can’t act on this without being held accountabele. And yet it is somehowacceptable for someone to act without accountability simply because his religious sentiments have been hurt” he said.
Reading from a modified statement that he had originally written after the fatwa was first pronounced against Rushdie. Dawkins pointed out that in the 16th century, some Catholics in England had written to a senior figure in the Vatican asking if it was acceptable to murder Elizabeth I. The answer was that since the Queen had led millions away from Catholicism, her murder would be a commendable act.