Imagine a lynch mob mentality that's turned into a pandemic. Here's an excerpt from NY Times story (link above) that should horrify everybody:
On a recent day, a dozen young men with faces smeared with mud stepped out of the forest near the small town of Keringet.
They were from the Kalenjin ethnic group and said they had killed 20 people this month. They were armed with bows, arrows, clubs and knives. Some wore animal skins with cellphones tucked in the folds.
Rono Kibet, one of the men, said elders in his community called a big meeting on Dec. 30. That was the night that Kenya’s election results were announced, giving Mr. Kibaki the victory over Raila Odinga, the top opposition leader, despite widespread evidence of vote rigging. More than 2,000 young men gathered, Mr. Kibet said, and the elders urged them to kill Kikuyus, Mr. Kibaki’s ethnic group, and burn down their houses. The Kalenjin had fought them before.
“The community raised the money for the gasoline,” Mr. Kibet said.
He explained how the elders blessed the young men, who then split into teams of 50 to hunt down Kikuyus with bows and arrows. He did not feel bad about shooting them, he said.
“We attack people, we burn their homes and then we take their animals,” Mr. Kibet said matter-of-factly.
...Mr. Kibet, the Kalenjin fighter, explained how at 14 he was sent into the forest for a few months to be circumcised and learn the ways of his people. He was taught how to shoot a bow and crack a skull with a wooden club. He described a transformation that he and his friends routinely make, shedding their jeans and day jobs for war paint and clubs.
“The Kikuyu are our enemy because they are on our land,” he said. “It is not good to kill their women or children. But to kill one of their men, that is an achievement.”
And now the other side:
A few villages away and a couple of hours later, Kikuyu farmers scanned the hilltops with a pair of old field glasses that never seemed quite in focus. They carried homemade guns built of wood, water pipes and umbrella springs, highly illegal but highly necessary, they said.
Some of the sentinels were among the most educated people in the area. One, Wilson Muiruri, a University of Nairobi student, was spending his Christmas holiday moonlighting as a warrior.
“I don’t hate Kalenjins at the university,” he said. “But out here, it’s different.”