China has vowed to crackdown on "sex-selective abortions" to close the gender gap, according to an AP report on Tuesday. Don't hold your breath.
A BBC News article, "China acts to protect baby girls," reported the same vow in 2004. Zhao Baige, then deputy director (and now vice minister) of China's National Population and Family Planning Commission, vowed seven years ago: "Illegal sex determination and sex-selective abortion must be strictly banned ... China has set the goal of lowering the sex ratio to a normal level by 2010."
The result? In 2004 there were 117 boys born for every 100 girls born. In 2011—a year after China had vowed to bring sex ratios to a normal level—there are now 119 boys born for every 100 girls born. The gender gap has not closed, but widened.
Same government. Same vow. Should we expect a different result?
We remember Zhao from the 2009 Copenhagen climate summit. Leading the charge to define human beings as walking carbon footprints, she stated:
"The [Chinese One Child] policy on family planning proves to be a great success. It not only contributes to reduction of global emission, but also provides experiences for other countries—developing countries in particular—in their pursuit for a coordinated and sustainable development. The 400 million births prevented as a result of China's policy since it was introduced in the 1970s, and the drop in the child-per-couple average from 5.8 to 1.8, resulted in 1.8 billion fewer tons of carbon dioxide being emitted each year."
Zhao's statement inspired a spate of articles extolling Chinese-style population control to combat global warming. CNN's Ted Turner injected new energy into this movement during the 2010 climate change conference in Cancun, Mexico, when he stated that the whole world should adopt the One Child Policy.
Make no mistake. China's One Child Policy is enforced through forced abortion, forced sterilization and infanticide. Women are dragged out of their homes, strapped to tables and forced to abort babies they want, up to the ninth month of pregnancy. Women sometimes die during these violent procedures. The One Child Policy is China's war on women. Adopting it worldwide would hurl women's rights back to the dark ages.
Click here to sign a petition against forced abortion in China.
Reggie Littlejohn is the president of Women's Rights Without Frontiers.
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