Dec 30, 2014 I Paul Seaburn

Argentine President Adopts Boy So He Won’t Become a Werewolf

Yes, you read that headline correctly and it indeed is true. Argentina’s President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner adopted a boy named Yair Tawil as her godson so he would not become a werewolf and eat unbaptized babies. Is this in the Argentine presidency’s oath of office?

What the president did was prevent the boy from turning into “el lobison.” According to Guaraní folklore – the Guaraní are the indigenous peoples Paraguay and parts of Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay and Bolivia – Lobison or Luison was the seventh son of the evil spirit Tau and his human wife Kerana. The name comes from a native word meaning werewolf or wolf-man and Lobison was believed to look and act like a half-man-half-canine, live in cemeteries and eat feces, decaying flesh and unbaptized babies. As the myth evolved, the seventh son in any family of all boys was cursed to become a werewolf or lobison on the first Friday after his 13th birthday.

Belief in this legend is so strong in Argentina that families were abandoning and even killing their seventh sons. In the 1920s, a law was passed giving seventh sons presidential protection through adoption. In 1973, President Juan Peron extended this protection to seventh daughters as well. Until 2009, this was only given to Catholics, a problem for Yair Tawil whose parents are Jewish. Fortunately for him, the law was extended to seventh sons of all faiths in 2009 and Yair became the president’s first Jewish godson.

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Argentine President Christina Fernandez de Kirchner with her new godson, Yair Tawil, who can no longer become a werewolf

Argentina's werewolf protection is not a bad deal – Yair also gets a gold medal and full educational scholarship.

Vandalism in Argentine cemeteries as well as unusual human deaths and killings of livestock are still blamed on Lobison and belief in the creature – as shown by this presidential adoption – is strong.

What do you think? Is Lobison real or just an excuse to get welfare for the youngest son of a big family?

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A sculpture of a lobison or luison

Paul Seaburn
Paul Seaburn is the editor at Mysterious Universe and its most prolific writer. He’s written for TV shows such as "The Tonight Show", "Politically Incorrect" and an award-winning children’s program. He's been published in “The New York Times" and "Huffington Post” and has co-authored numerous collections of trivia, puzzles and humor. His “What in the World!” podcast is a fun look at the latest weird and paranormal news, strange sports stories and odd trivia. Paul likes to add a bit of humor to each MU post he crafts. After all, the mysterious doesn't always have to be serious.

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