I’ve just finished reading a New York Times article on the tragic murders of an albino mother and her five-year-old son in Burundi, who were killed by witch-doctors for their body parts. (New York Times, May 8, 2010, Burundi: Albino Mother and Son Are Killed.)
This is possibly the most senseless crime I have ever heard of.
About ten years ago belief spread in East Africa that eating the body parts of an albino will bring fortune and success. So witch-doctors and medicine men began hunting albinos. Since 2007, 71 albinos have been killed in Tanzania alone. Tens of thousands have gone into hiding. The entire notion is completely absurd – BUT IT’S NOT BEING STOPPED.
Here in the United States we are rightfully angered when people are biased against because of the color of their skin. But if mothers and five-year-old boys are dying in Burundi because of their skin color shouldn’t we all be outraged.
The killers must be brought to justice so that a message is sent loud and clear that no person anywhere will die because of the color of their skin.
One small step forward I am taking is to write to the President of Burundi to offer to help, in whatever way needed, stop this atrocity.
AN OPEN LETTER TO THE PRESIDENT OF BURUNDI, PIERRE NKURUNZIZA
Dear President Nkurunziza,
I write to you with a sad heart, saddened by the tragic murder of a Burundian mother and her five-year-old son.
I write to say these killers must be brought to justice. And I write to encourage you to pour every possible resource into protecting the lives of the marginalized albinos in Burundi.
I know that you are a man of God. I know your heart is good. So I simply write to implore you to seek justice for the albinos of Burundi.
I write on behalf of Christians everywhere to say, Please stop this senseless crime. I do not write to place blame or to judge, I write to encourage action.
I also write to offer the resources of every Christian in my country who cares about justice. I write to offer means to help educate a population that killing albinos is the worst kind of crime, the most senseless of crimes. Albinos, like all of us, are created by God, in His image, and they are loved and prized by God – it’s just that their skin is a different color. And only sheer ignorance would cause anyone to believe that there is magic in their bones.
I offer the recourses of every Christian in America who cares about justice to help shelter and protect the albinos of Burndi.
I write to offer to partner with you to rescue those who’s very lives are threatened because of the color of their skin.
May God’s great hand of blessing be on your life as you continue to lead with wisdom.
Dr. Palmer Chinchen