Among some tribes in the Omo River Valley in southwestern Ethiopia certain children are considered Mingi (Impure, Ritually polluted)
Reasons for being declared Mingi are: Being born out of wedlock. Being the result of an unplanned pregnancy. Being born a twin. Being born with a cleft lip or palate. Being born with some sort of deformity or imperfection. Having one's genitals injured in some way. Having ones teeth develop in the upper jaw before the lower jaw. Chipping a tooth during childhood.
Children declared Mingi are considered cursed by the spirits.
It is believed that if allowed to live a Mingi child will bring misfortune to the community.
Children declared Mingi are either abandoned to die or killed outright.
Mingi children are either drowned, starved, or, in the case of infants, have dirt stuffed in their mouths so that they choke to death.
Another bitter truth of dabbling in spirituality. Paranoid and genocidal actions like these CANNOT stand. The power of prayer is next to nothing to what actual human time and effort can do to make change. Protest this injustice by any means. Write your congressmen, donate to humane charities, spread the word! The secular authorities MUST be notified of this depravity.
I think that I understand why this concept came about. It's probably due to desperate survival requirements, any failings or misfortune being perceived as a potential risk that a tribe living on the edge can't afford. Then the worries about features which aren't an actual risk get piled onto the same concept. They exaggerate the fears.