China Promises to Do More to Stop Sex-Selection Abortions

International   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Aug 8, 2011   |   12:20PM   |   Beijing, China

With more international attention placed on the problem of sex-selection abortions in China and the millions of young girls who are missing in the Asian nation’s population base, officials are promising to do more to stop them.

AP indicates China has put forward the pledge to tackle sex-selection abortions in a new pan that outlines goals for child development through 2020 but apparently has no specifics on how it would address the thorny problem. The plan would have Chinese officials do more to combat the black market usage of ultrasound technology to determine the sex of the unborn child so a woman or couple could obtain an abortion.

The problem of sex-selection abortion has seen the gender ratio in China skew heavily towards boys, as the current male-female ratio stands at about 119 males to 100 females nationwide and as high as 130-100 in some rural parts of the nation where culture mores favor boys to inherit property and lead a family.

China appears unwilling to address that cultural practice that leads to sex-selection abortions, female infanticides and the selling of girl babies or subjecting them to child slavery or sex trafficking. It also appears uninterested in reforming or repealing the one-child policy — based on forced abortions and sterilizations — that pushes families to favor boys over girls because they only have the chance for one or two children (in rural areas) rather than the ability to have multiple children.

The official Xinhua news agency provides more details than AP reported and it indicates the new efforts to supposedly stop sex-selection abortions will target the use of ultrasound for non-medical purposes and the plans come in the Outline for the Development of Chinese Children document which aim to “eliminate discrimination against girls.”

“Using ultrasonic techniques to conduct non-medical sex determination” should be strictly prohibited, it says, according to Xinhua.

Some provinces have begun loosening the one-child policy, which also allows a second child if the parents are both only children themselves. Guangdong Province, one of the country’s most populated regions, is allowing parents to have a second child if just one of the parents is an only child themselves.

Alan Sears tackles the issue of sex-selection abortion in a new opinion column at TownHall today.

“As a result of the latter, instead of increasing their enjoyment of freedom, women actually face a “freedom gap” that was not present prior to the legacy of Roe v Wade,” he says.This is chiefly due to the fact that one of the clearest results of the revisionist legal movement in the United States was the court-ordered allowance of abortion on demand in Roe, and it’s now demonstrable that one of the unforeseen outcomes of such abortion practices has been the killing of far more preborn girls than preborn boys (that is, in the name of “freedom,” women are literally killing themselves.)”

“And sadly, this “freedom gap” is even more pronounced if we look at it internationally, where many countries also went down the path of accepting the practice of killing preborn children on demand and have, as a result, seen girls aborted at exponentially higher levels than boys,” Sears adds. “In South Korea, for instance, “the sex ratio for first births…was 104 boys for every 100 girls…in 1989.” But if a couple’s first child was a girl, they turned to abortion in order to prevent the birth of a second girl and the result was a sex ratio for second births of 113 boys to 100 girls. For the third birth it was 185 boys for 100 girls and for the fourth, 209 boys for 100 girls. In India alone, where abortion based on gender is rampant, it is estimated that up to 12 million girls were aborted between the years 1980 and 2010.”

“According to researcher Mara Hvistendahl, throughout the world there have been so many “sex-selective abortions in the past three decades that 163 million girls” that should have been born were killed instead,” he adds. “One-hundred sixty-three million. Could a greater “freedom gap” be imaginable?”

“Yet it seems that even when confronted with these numbers, the left remains so adamant about protecting “access” to abortion that they aren’t prepared to give an inch. And some even argue that “women become scarce, their value increases, and…this as a positive development.” When Thomas Jefferson wrote the words “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” as a summary of the kind of freedoms we were meant to enjoy, it was foremost in his mind, and implicit in the phrase itself, that “life” is the first of many conditions for the “liberty” and “happiness” that follow. Today, we are trying to pursue “liberty” and “happiness” without giving “life” its rightful place, and it’s simply not working,” he concludes. “Instead of freedom, women now have a “freedom gap” as a result of the policies of the left.”