I'm a man of faith, a retired pastor, and I have no intention of changing my beliefs. I can generally get along with almost anyone of any faith (or none), given mutual respect and tolerance. However, when I read a story like this one from Pakistan, it breaks my heart. Bold print is my emphasis.
While girls were buried in pre-Islamic period as unwanted creature, cruel souls in Karachi are a step ahead: they kill and throw them at garbage. This nameless girl is not the only victim of barbarity. From January 2017 to April 2018, Edhi foundation and Chhipa Welfare organisation have found 345 such new born babies dumped in garbage in Karachi only and 99 percent of them were girls.
"We have been dealing with such cases for years and there are a few such incidents which shook our souls as much. It left us wondering whether our society is heading back to primitive age,” Anwar Kazmi, a senior manager in Edhi Foundation Karachi, told The News.
. . .
In many major cities of Pakistan, Edhi foundation installed ‘Jhoolas’ (baby cradles) so that the people should leave unwanted children there instead of killing them. The number of such sites is in hundreds across the country but this initiative received little success. One of the reasons for the lack of response to such ‘Jhoolas’ is wrath of religious leadership which believe this will promote illegitimacy.
. . .
“We have seen so many horrible incidents. One such incident which still I remember despite passage of more than a decade is the stoning of a new born baby who was found outside mosque”, says Mr. Kazmi.
“A few people found a baby at the door step of a mosque in Karachi and they handed the baby over to the prayer leader. The cleric decried that this is an illegitimate baby therefore he should be stoned. Resultantly the baby was stoned to death. I tried to register a case against the cleric but nothing happened”, narrated Kazmi.
There's more at the link, and in this report.
I would ask how any human being could be so warped and twisted as to blame an innocent child, who did not ask to be conceived or born, for the sins of his or her parents . . . but then I remember the label "illegitimate" that Christian nations used to attach to infants born out of wedlock. It's completely wrong, of course. According to the Christian moral code, those children are not "illegitimate" at all; the sin is their parents', not the child's. However, that didn't stop such children growing up with a real stigma attached to them until very recently. It might affect their prospects for marriage, work, and in many other areas.
There are those who claim that religion is at the root of most of the world's evils. When one reads reports like this, it's very hard to defend one's faith against such claims. Of course, they're not true: evil human beings have committed those crimes and sins, not God, and to blame God for the actions of sinners is nothing more or less than a cop-out. (Unbelievers will retort that God doesn't exist, so why not blame those who act - or claim to act - in his name?) I won't go down that rat-hole here . . . but I will mourn today for that little girl, stoned to death at the command of an alleged religious leader who deserves nothing more than to suffer the same punishment. I wouldn't like to be in his shoes when he comes to face his own Judgment.