"A Pakistani man was sentenced to death on Tuesday for beating his 12-year-old daughter to death — because she couldn’t bake “perfect bread.” Khalid Mehmood — who killed Aneeqa and dumped her body outside the Mayo Hospital in Lahore — told authorities that he feared she had been abducted after she went missing in 2015 during a shopping errand, the Metro of the UK reported. But cops discovered that Mehmood and his son, Abuzar, killed the girl because she failed to properly bake gol roti, a type of chapati bread, the Express Tribune reported. Mehmood and Abuzar confessed to the murder after the false missing-persons report was filed. A judge sentenced the dad to death and fined him 500,000 Pakistani."
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Needless to say when I read this story of a small Pakistani girl killed by her father for not making proper roti, or tortilla, it brought a lot of memories to the fore.
My dad was one of thirteen kids born to a day laborer in the village of Kasur in 1920 in India. They were dirt poor and had no proper abode or utilities. They lived in a mud shack and on occasion enjoyed a full meal depending on how many pennies their dad had managed to earn on a particular day.
The roti story brought a memory back which is ingrained in the recesses of my mind. My father said his mom used to cook rotis sitting in the courtyard with all thirteen children surrounding her, and that barely had the roti left the pan that it was torn into shreds and consumed by the youngsters. My dad being the eldest took on the role of care giver and would often go hungry.
He told me tales of how his father used to beat his mother and him for no other reason that the roti wasn't round enough.
This story brought my dad's story to mind. It is 2016. And poverty, ignorance, violence and lack of humanity persist in our otherwise technically advanced world. We are running out of excuses for bad behavior. My dad never had clean drinking water, or electricity, or paved roads growing up. Yet, in a world that has come such a long way, there is still murder, anger, bigotry, and hate. I think the reason is that technological advancement doesn't go hand in hand with moral or humanitarian growth.
We need to teach more social and emotional learning to our kids.
I read a quote that said, "Don't become preoccupied with your child's academic ability, but instead teach them to sit with those sitting alone. Teach them to be kind. Teach them to offer help. Teach them to become a friend to the lonely. Teach them to encourage others. Teach them to think about other people. Teach them to look for good. This is how they'll change the world."