Infanticide and culture

The Telegraph recently carried an article Girl survived tribe's custom of live baby burial. This tells of some Amazonian indians in Brazil, who practise infanticide. Babies who are considered 'abnormal' (which includes being twins or triplets, let alone physical defects) are buried alive, or 'suffocated with leaves, poisoned or simply abandonned in the jungle'.

You won't be surprised to know that a certain Dr Erwin Frank 'an anthropology professor at the Federal University of Raiaima Sate in the Amazon' defended the custom, saying 'This is their way of life and we should not judge them on the basis of our values. The difference between the cultures should be respected'.

Alternatively, it puts into context what Pope Benedict said to the bishops of Brazil on 13th May 2007:
'The ‘Utopia’ of going back to breathe life into the pre-Columbian religions, separating them from Christ and from the universal Church, would not be a step forward: indeed, it would be a step back. In reality, it would be a retreat towards a stage in history anchored in the past.'
A step back indeed!

Needless to say, the Pope was heavily criticised for venturing any criticism of the pre-Christian civilisation ...

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