"Man beheaded to redden bricks - Sun, Mar 21, 2010 AFP
DHAKA - A BANGLADESHI labourer was murdered by brick-field workers who burnt his head in a kiln in the belief this would redden their bricks, police said on Sunday.
Four suspects were arrested for beheading the 26-year-old bricklayer in a remote town in northern Bangladesh on the instructions of the brick-field's owners, said local police chief Golam Sarwar Bhuiyan.
'They said the owners were unhappy as the brick-field was not producing reddish bricks despite enough heating. A fortune teller then suggested that the brick-field needed a human sacrifice,' he said."
I was going to write about an inspirational tale of a Chinese man who regained his sense of purpose after being depressed and suicidal in the initial years after he lost one of his leg in a railway accident. The motivational push for his revival is his desire to keep his promise of sponsoring his younger sister should she made it to university. There is the motivational pull as well for him as he begun to regain his self-respect and earned his dignity with selling newspapers instead of being a beggar just to get enough to pass through the day far away from his home town.
Alas, this Bangladesh's tragic news grabbed my attention as I am shocked to learn, perhaps too idealistically, that there are still people who are ignorant, if not stupid, enough to KILL a fellow human being on such ridiculous excuses!!
Lessons for me are:
1. we need to continue to fight and work hard to eradicate ignorance and superstition. It is just unacceptable that fellow workers, human beings, will ever contemplate killing someone they worked with on a fortune teller's absurd and murderous suggestion! What were they thinking of? The power of warped emotion is totally destructive!;
2. hopefully such instance is the very rare case though whenever a human life is lost unnecessarily it is one too many. The laws must come down hard on such cases and the need to publicize this type of stupid crime is punished most severely like any other serious crimes. The fortune teller, hopefully, can be charged with incitement besides those who actually carried out the killing;
3. Bangladeshi is a developing nation. In fact, quite a few of their citizens are being hired in Singapore to work in the construction industry. Perhaps they can be the ones that go back and change the thinking of their fellow citizens that 'killing someone and used the blood or skull to make the brick red is just the most stupid thing to ever try!'.
Will it ever happen again in Bangladeshi or another remote factory sites on Mother Earth? Hope not!!