News of the Day ... in Perspective
U.S. criticizes China’s one-child law.
In testimony before the House International Relations Committee, State Department officials state that China’s one-child program remains a cause of forced abortions and infanticide. Because parents desperately want a male heir, female infanticide or selective abortion of females is rampant. The boy:girl ratio is now as high as 122:100 (AP 12/15/04).
Mao Hengfeng, who peacefully protested the one-child policy, has been imprisoned and is reportedly being tortured.
Any woman who has more than her quota of children faces “social compensation fees” of up to ten times annual household income, loss of health insurance and educational opportunities for her children, job loss, forced sterilization, and even imprisonment. Her husband is also severely punished.
With approximately one-fifth of the world’s population, China has 56% of the world’s female suicides. The World Bank estimates that the rate is five times the world average (Population Research Institute weekly briefing, 12/20/04).
Guizhou Province in Southwest China will prohibit abortions after 14 weeks, and the city of Guiyang will prohibit gender identification for nonmedical purposes. The male:female ratio in Guiyang for second and third children is 129:100, and 147:100, respectively. An increase in forced prostitution and trafficking in women is attributed to the shortage of brides (lifenews.com 12/16/04).