Expect to hear a lot of the term gendercide in the next while, in part because of Mara Hvistendahl’s new book, Unnatural Selection: Choosing Boys Over Girls, And The Consequences Of A World Full Of Men. The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada has released a discussion paper on the topic. The subject is finally getting some much-needed and overdue attention. As always, Mark Steyn sums up (in 2008) the issue quite nicely:
Sex-selective abortion is a fact of life in India, where the gender ratio has declined to 1,000 boys to 900 girls nationally, and as low as 1,000 boys to 300 girls in some Punjabi cities. In China, the state-enforced “one child” policy has brought about the most gender-distorted demographic cohort in global history, the so-called guang gun — “bare branches.” If you can only have one kid, parents choose to abort girls and wait for a boy, to the point where in the first generation to grow to adulthood under this policy there are 119 boys for every 100 girls. In practice, a “woman’s right to choose” turns out to mean the right to choose not to have any women.
In 2004, we editorialized about the threat that sex ratio imbalances, fueled by depopulation schemes, might bring to regional stability:
Mother Teresa famously said that the greatest threat to peace was abortion. In Asia, high rates of abortion, fuelled by China’s one-child policy and India’s depopulation schemes, are leading to sex ratios so skewed that China and India may become imperialist nations just to quell the domestic problems that such ratios engender. That is the theory postulated by Valerie M. Hudson and Andrea M. den Boer in their book, Bare Branches.
There is, of course, the central moral issue of the worth of all human beings and the right not to be destroyed by abortion and to be loved regardless of whether one is a boy or a girl. But drawing attention to the geopolitical effects might open people’s eyes to the dangers of Red China’s one-child policy and depopulation policies foisted upon the developing world; when falling fertility rates meet cultural preferences for males (which are being imported to the West through immigration) the result is the death of baby girls. As Ross Douthat recently noted in the New York Times, there are not 160 million “missing” girls in Asia, but 160 million dead girls. What is the future for a society that exercises its “right” to eliminate women? And where are the feminists on this issue?