When I was writing 'The Satanic Verses,' if you had asked me about the phenomenon that we all now know as radical Islam, I wouldn't have had much to say. As recently as the mid-1980s, it didn't seem to be a big deal.
I used to write a monthly column for the 'New York Times' syndicate. But I stopped because I found it really hard to have one extreme opinion a month. I don't know how these columnists have two or three ideas a week; I was having difficulty having 12 things to say a year.
The world is full of things that upset people. But most of us deal with it and move on and don't try and burn the planet down.
Sometimes I think that when people become famous, there's a public perception that they are not human beings any more. They don't have feelings; they don't get hurt; you can act and say as you like about them.