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“The girl is taken to a shrine or a cemetery in the middle of the night, her finger nails are cut off, her pubic hair is shaved, a menstrual pad containing her blood is taken away, and then a piece of her clothing is removed,” he said.

Is this:

(a) the latest Brazilian trend in grooming
(b) a planned challenge for VH1′s “Charm School
(c) sorority hazing
(d) part of a ‘voodoo curse’ used to force Nigerian girls into prostitution

If you guessed (d), you’re sadly right:

Experts said the women were scared into submission because of a vow they were forced to take on the graves of their ancestors before they left Nigeria.

It’s too bad this voodoo magic fell into unscrupulous hands, as one can easily imagine Nigeria being a much nicer place if ancestor-grave vows were used to commit people to

However, since it’s never going to get used for these things, I have no qualms about pointing out to Nigerian voodoo-believers that their religion is false.

Now, like anyone else writing a book, I hope to become rich and famous enough to own my own island and gold-plated rocket car. But if I can convince just one Nigerian girl that her religion is false and that no voodoo ritual can “destroy her soul” (since there’s no such thing) and that she shouldn’t listen to shamans trying force her into prostitution, it will all be worth it.


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