Friday, June 26, 2009

Witchcraft: Still Happening in 2009

Many of us associate witches with Halloween, the occasional monty python skit, or even witch doctors, but it is shocking to hear that people still believe that witches exist! BBC reported on a village called Kisii in Kenya, where those deemed to be witches are actually burned at the stake by the community at large, with support of the local police. Witchcraft is commonplace there, and in many other communities throughout Africa and parts of Asia.

One member of the Kisii community was quoted by BBC, and said, " 'In other communities, there are witches all round but in Kisii we have come up with a new method, we want to kill these people using our own hands.' " REALLY.

Naturally men are in the minority of witches, but are stigmatized for being relatives of other witches.

In 2008, a Nigerian man was arrested for killing 110 child "witches," who had been abandoned by their parents who also believed the children to be witches. The murderer had explained that he had killed the witches, not the children, creating a disconnect between a human life, and one of a "witch." The children are often used as scapegoats to explain links to poverty or pain that adults experience.

I can't honestly say that much is happening on the international level to put an end to witchcraft, as there are seemingly bigger fish to fry than stopping a superstition, although this is an issue that we need to publicize and put a stop to!

1 comment:

Lauren said...

Fascinating and very sad post.