Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Pale Plight

Here are some faces of Albinism:

Albinism affects people from all races.

This inherited condition, characterized by the absence of melanin (which gives us our colouring), is known to affect mammals, fish, birds, reptiles, and amphibians.

Global statistics indicate that about 1 in 17,000 people has some form of albinism.

In Africa the statistics are much higher - about 1 in 4,000.

People with albinism can suffer a variety of physical ailments, from vision problems to photosensitivity and various skin cancers, but it is the discrimination and superstitions which make the lives of albinos around the world unbearable.

In Africa the problem is endemic. Due to lack of education, many fear how different an albino child looks - hence there are a variety of reactions - all are dehumanizing.

From the belief the child is cursed to having supernatural powers; some albinos are killed at birth, others are coveted for potions in spiritual medicines.

In Tanzania and Kenya, ritual murders of albinos made international news over the past few years, but sadly the problems have persisted for these people in their communities for centuries.

In Ghana, no international attention has been focused on the plight of the albino, but it doesn't mean they are not suffering. Every day.

Let's let go of these silly superstitions. Ignorance is it's breeding ground. For the kids - let go of fear and bigotry. Hug someone with albinism today!
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IanH said...

Wow, I had no idea it was so prevalent! Thanks for pointing it out.

broomscorner said...

Nice one.people were afraid of albinos back in the day. I am glad they are finally getting the attention they deserve. Ghanaians need enlightenment.

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