A twenty-year-old woman has been burned alive in Papua New Guinea. It seems that she was tortured with red-hot rods before being tied to a pile of tires. Then a bucket of gasoline was thrown to her.

Is this the first case of alleged witches sent to the stake? Of course not! In Europe, in the Middle Ages putting witches to death by burning them at the stake was quite normal.

Not only alleged witches were burnt to death, but also heretics underwent the same doom.

If you happen to go to Rome, visit Campo dei Fiori and you will see the statue of the philosopher Giordano Bruno who was condemned to the stake by the Inquisition.

Nowadays, this kind of execution is relic of the past.

What would I do if I were a ruler of Papua New Guinea? First of all, I would start an educational campaign. In fact, at the base of whatever form of intolerance there is ignorance. I would make the study of morals and law compulsory.

I would teach that nobody can know what is good and what is bad, because they are two sides of the same coin. They coexist in each of us.

I would teach that everyone is convinced to be right and follows his path as a train runs on its railway. We human beings are like that; we follow our tracks and cannot understand the others who have their journey on different tracks.

I would teach that one of the most important achievements of human society is the lawsuit, which is the observance of a procedure before sentencing.

That twenty-year-old woman was condemned without a trial. Who knows if she was a real witch or not! Sometimes, what looks real reveals untrue after a long time, but it is too late to repair the mistake.

Ettore Grillo, author of The Vibrations of Words




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