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P 1cp 1

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P 1cp 1

  1. 1. Imagine having your reproductive rights, and the ability to choose your family size dictated by agovernment. This is exactly what China did in 1979, when they adopted the one child policy. Especially inurban areas of China, the government encourages families to have one child only, exerting pressure oncouples who have more than one, offering free abortions, and levying fines against people who choose tohave more than one child. The one child policy has been largely ignored by most residents in rural areasof China, and in truth is not regularly enforced. Yet in cities where the immense population of China isoverwhelmingly felt, strong pressure exists for families to not have more than a single child.Chinese leader, Deng Xiaoping, first instituted the one child policy and initially this stringent populationcontrol was instituted as a temporary measure only. It has been renewed every five years, and isbeginning to meet resistance. In 2007, riots broke out in the Guangxi Province, because governmentofficials there reportedly were forcing pregnant women to undergo abortions if they were having an“illegal” child. There have also been allegations throughout the years of women being forcibly sterilized inorder to keep the population stable.There are exceptions to the one child policy. People who are now marrying and have no siblings can seekpermission from the government to have two children, maintaining the zero growth population standardsChina sought. Further, typically China does not enforce the policy with any regularity in rural areas. To doso might cause further uprisings and issues that China doesn’t wish to face. This means, that the onechild policy has brought China’s population down, but still remains at zero population level, with anaverage of two children per couple.The effects of this policy have had implications for female children in China. From a traditional standpoint,long predating communism, girl children are not as valuable as boys. Since there are now methods ofpredetermining gender prior to giving birth, women who are pregnant with girls are more likely to abortthem. Another problem of epidemic proportions is the abandonment of girls to orphanages. The onechild policy makes it relatively easy for people outside of China to adopt Chinese girl babies and children.Only about a fifth of the children in orphanages are boys. High rates of infanticide also exist for girl babiesborn in urban areas.The one child policy has further led to a disproportionate number of males to females. There areapproximately 115 males to every 100 females born since the policy laws were enacted. The normal ratioworldwide is about 105 to 100. Though reducing the population rate in China is a laudable goalconsidering its overpopulation, other governments and many humanitarian organizations have longcriticized this particular policy. It doesnt seem to represent the will of the people in China, and perhaps inthe future may be abandoned, after the extension of this policy expires in 2010

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