When you’re an albino life isn’t all white parties and seeing the world through rose coloured lenses. This is especially true if you happen to live in Sub-Saharan Africa where it has recently been discovered that albino people are being hunted and killed for their body parts which it is believed adds extra potency to black magic (don’t say it). Now lets just give that sentence a second going over – albinos (people, that is) are being hunted and killed for their body parts (correct) which is believed to add potency (eye of newt suddenly proving hard to come by??) to black magic (don’t say it).
Now, far be it for this blog to poke fun at anyone’s belief system – some believe in praying to a single almighty god will provide salvation; others practice a lifetime’s meditation to seek harmony with the universe; others, let’s call them Tom, await the space monsters to descend and whiz them away to Xenu. It’s their business. But when you’re chopping up our pink eyed brothers and selling their necks on a card table at the Mombasa Street Market of a Sunday – are you serious?
With the value of the body parts growing the black market (don’t say it) trade in albino body parts has increased and desperate circumstances in which these guys find themselves in is ever more perilous. Recently a 13 year old girl was hacked to death by machete-wielding men in Tanzania, such are the market forces unleashed when local witch doctors discovered that convincing the local warlord that he can enjoy swinging an 8 hour baseball bat erection courtesy of pinch of albino powder, he could have the shiniest Mercedes in the village . Good times.
It’s not all bad news. The Tanzanian Albino Society – funded by the UK based Action on Disability and Development group – has recently launched an awareness program which seeks to educate albinos on their rights. Just in case they weren’t aware that expecting not to be chopped up and boiled into stock and sold was a right which was in their possession. Sometimes that stuff is in the fine print.
Whatever. Albinos in Africa are now increasingly forced to seek shelter in safe haven set-ups across countries such as Kenya as the murder rate increases. Yet another good news story from the world of religious make believe.