China's One Child Policy Essay

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China is the world's most populous nation and its population has, on average, increased by over 25 people every minute, every day for the past 40 years. (Richards 5) For a developing country such as China, with 22 percent of the world's population and only 7 percent of the world's arable land, rapid and persistent population growth can contribute significantly to the nation's poverty levels and restrain its potential for economic growth. (Gu 42) China's one-child family policy was first announced in 1979. In a 1979 speech, Deng Xiaoping drew the first outlines of a policy to limit population growth, "Use whatever means you must to control China's population. Just do it." (Mosher 50) Basically the aim of China's one-child family policy…show more content…
In the mid-1980's, according to Chinese government statistics, birth control surgeries such as abortions, sterilizations, and IUD insertions, were running at a rate of 30 million a year. (Mosher 50) Numbers for more recent years are unavailable; the Chinese government, embarrassed by reports of coercion and female infanticide, has refused to release them. Many, if not most, of these operations are performed on women whose "consent" has been wrung out of them by threats and punishments. (Mosher 50) When questions are asked of the whereabouts of the 1.7 million female babies that fail to show up in birth statistics each year, there are disturbing explanations. (Richards 6) Another consequence of China's one-child policy is that the male to female ratio in China has been seriously unbalanced since the policy's introduction. In 1992, Chinese birth statistics indicated the proportion of boys to girls was 118.5 to 100. (Richards 7) This equates to 36 million more males than females at present and a predicted surplus of 70 million single males by the end of the century as a result. (Richards 7) As this enhances the success of the policy it is also having serious consequences, such as the widespread abduction of women. This trade is worth over a billion dollars a year and the problem is likely to escalate as men find it increasingly hard to find a wife. Although women are still

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