Recent reports reveal the costly socio-economic and human reality of four decades of gendercide in China. Gendercide is sex-selective abortion, which has resulted in the murder of girls (born or unborn) at disproportionately higher rates than boys. Gendercide is a direct result of China's One Child Policy.
If the consequences of China's policies are not seriously heeded, tragedies of unknown proportions will occur in America—as they are already occurring around the world.
In 1964, the first national Family Planning Office was established to oversee China's fertility reduction program, which included implementing a One Child Policy (one child per couple). To enforce the policy, the government instituted mandatory birth control and abortion (often referred to as "remedial measures").
By 1979, China enforced stricter rules. Government officials chart women's menstrual cycles and require monthly pelvic exams to prevent pregnancies. Every married couple must apply for a birth permit before starting a pregnancy. After having one child, women are required to be inserted with IUDs or be sterilized. If a pregnancy is unauthorized, it is to be terminated and one spouse is required to be sterilized. For the majority of people, a second pregnancy and any pregnancy without a birth permit, is referred to as "out-of-plan" and illegal.
Today, nearly two-thirds of all Chinese couples (approximately 900 million people, or the equivalent to three times the size of the U.S. population) are under the jurisdiction of the One Child Policy, which is enforced by 300,000 officials.
The consequences of the One Child Policy are direr than could have ever been foreseen.
China has the highest abortion rate in the world. Since 1971, the Chinese Health Ministry reported that it has recorded 336 million abortions, 196 million sterilizations, and 403 million IUD implants. Approximately 30-60 percent of Chinese women, depending on their age, have an abortion each year. Abortions and sterilizations are often unsafe, lack proper sanitation or anesthesia, and frequently result in hemorrhaging, infection, paralysis, or death.
China has the highest rate of suicide among women worldwide, but China only accounts for one fifth of the world's population. And, according to the World Health Organization, China is the only country in the world in which suicide is higher among women than men.
And China, which rivals India with the highest gendercide rate in the world, over the last four decades has witnessed an unprecedented gender imbalance—a direct result of gendercide. There are nearly 40 million more men then women in China (a population difference the size of California). This has resulted in less women with whom men can marry and have children, less participants in the workforce, and escalated rates of unemployment and crime among men.
Social scientists have correlated China's gender imbalance to staggering levels of increased crime, bride abduction, trafficking of women and children, rape, and prostitution—that are taking place all over Asia—not just within China.
For the Chinese who largely live in rural areas, they leave behind over seventeen million children in orphanages because they cannot afford the fine or endure imprisonment, punishments enforced by the government for breaking the One Child Policy. These orphans are "out-of-plan," which means that they have no legal rights. If they survive, they suffer deplorable conditions and weaker or less healthy girls are often neglected in "dying rooms."
Many human rights organizations, governments, and NGOs rightly condemn China's One Child Policy, and are in their own ways seeking to respond to the results of gendercide. Yet, Americans should be troubled to learn that the U.S. is not far behind its communist trade partner when it comes to sex-selective abortion.
- (Photo: Reuters / Kevin Lamarque)
While even members of Congress might state that such a practice does not occur in America, it does. (Congresswoman Diana DeGette (D-CO) said she didn't support "abortion for gender selection… I don't know anyone who does. Maybe that's because there is no problem in this country of abortion for gender selection.") And Congressional leaders, the President, and abortion activists do support the practice—in America.
To date, Live Action Films has produced undercover videos of Planned Parenthood employees explaining how a woman can have a sex-selective abortion within the legal timeframe in Arizona, Hawaii, New York, North Carolina, and Texas. Even the Economist reported that within Chinese and Japanese-American populations, distorted sex ratios exist in America, which are directly linked to sex-selective abortions.
Last year, Congressman Trent Franks (R-Az.) sponsored the Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act (PRENDA), which would make it illegal for doctors to perform sex-selective abortions, punishable by jail. The measure failed in the House. This year, Franks resubmitted the bill and it is currently in committee.
Organizations like NARAL claim that PRENDA would "limit access to abortions" and that PRENDA is a "race and sex-based attack on choice," meaning that NARAL supports abortion based on race and sex. President Obama, who supports infanticide, told ABC News that he opposes PRENDA because "the government should not intrude in medical decisions or private family matters in this way."
But sex-selective abortions are not private matters. If the effects of gendercide in China are any guide, social scientists have only just begun to uncover what seem to be globally reaching and devastating socio-economic consequences.