Human Rights

In China, ‘having too many children’ can lead to imprisonment, raids, and fines

sex-selective abortion

In a recent tweet, columnist Sohrab Ahmari drew attention to the consequences of governments treating human beings as disposable. Criticizing a remark made by former Vice President Joe Biden in August 2011, Ahmari reflected on how China’s brutal One-Child Policy is very personal for him.

“My wife is a survivor of China’s one-child policy. She was conceived as a second child just as the policy went into effect,” Ahmari wrote. “Her parents managed to keep her through all sorts of heroic efforts. She does ‘second-guess’ the policy, Mr. Biden. It had sentenced her to death.” 

Ahmari’s wife was fortunate that she was spared, but sadly, quite a few children faced a different fate. The One-Child Policy was established in China in 1978 in order to curb population growth in the country, and it prevented 400 million births. Due to cultural preferences for male births, the policy led to the loss of 40 million girls to sex-selective abortions.

The Chinese government strictly enforced the regulation against the number of pregnancies women could have by subjecting violators of the law to fines, job termination, and forced abortions.

“In China, a woman’s body is not her own. It belongs to the state,” testified Reggie Littlejohn, president of Women’s Rights Without Frontiers. “For the Chinese Communist Party to act as ‘womb police’ and crush the life inside her is a heinous crime against humanity.”

READ: Pro-life women’s group: Sex slavery and trafficking in China are fruits of the One-Child Policy

Even though China later altered the One-Child Policy to a Two-Child Policy, the degradation of human life has only continued. 

Verified drone footage from China last month showed Uighur Muslims with shaven heads being loaded onto trains, and a recent report from the Associated Press contained even more shocking details. The AP noted that “having too many children” can lead to people being sent to detention camps, and homes are subject to raids by law-enforcement agents searching for hidden children. A parent who has three or more children may be taken from their families unless they pay an excessive fine. 

The stories of survivors like Tursunay Ziyawudun provide a glimpse into just some of the horrors women have had to endure. 

According to the AP report, “Tursunay Ziyawudun said she was injected until she stopped having her period, and kicked repeatedly in the lower stomach during interrogations. She now can’t have children and often doubles over in pain, bleeding from her womb.”

China’s One-Child Policy might have been “relaxed,” but the moral depravity behind its enforcement is still present. Onlookers cannot afford to withhold judgment if these violations of human dignity are to be stopped.  

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