On the release of the Chinese government its census data last month, it revealed the extent of the population slowdown. The country’s fertility rate is now one of the lowest in the world. Last year the number of births is the same as in the early 1960s, in the struggle in China a starving famine.
The numbers are too obvious to ignore. This week the government announced a new three-child policy, further easing population control that has taken place over four decades. The Chinese public responded to the online announcement by mocking its lack. Even if parents are allowed to have two children from 2015, home experts and even the central bank are calling for population controls to be completely abolished. They warn of future problems brought on by a rapidly declining population, such as the burden on young individuals who have to support aging parents and grandparents.
But Beijing has refused to sever ties with its historic population control. Recognizing the wrong government is to claim that the Communist party’s most hated policy from Mao’s time is not only brutal but also useless. Developed in the late 1970s on the basis of population channels, a single-child policy was won by weapons scientists, one of the few groups of researchers to remain politically tight after the Cultural Revolution. . In the decades since, the policy of a child has brought so much to the state of women’s bodies that trauma is far from filming.
It is important to reflect on these traumas, from multiple forced abductions to daughters hiding to try on sons. But the Communist party is not interested in reflection. In moving it away from preventing the encouragement of births, the government should avoid making the same mistakes. Population control equipment was prepared to collect fines and enforce sterilizations. A very different approach is necessary to support reproductions.
The health and population policies of countries can empower or cripple their citizens. The first time I experienced the difference was as a visiting student at Peking University. In a class discussing sexual health with social work graduates, I mentioned that women can get IUDs for free on the NHS in the UK. Most of my female classmates sounded amazed. I searched my dictionary, wondering if I had made a mistranslation. Finally, one asked if the women volunteered to get them. For them the IUD is a small metal weapon for forced sterilization. They can be inserted into the womb of women against their will and left there. My classmates didn’t think a woman would be willing to ask one to have control over her own body.
When Chinese scientists released the population path in the 1970s, they did not take into account social variables. Along with the historical preference for sons that is often of a patriarchy, a child policy that has led to selective sexual abortions, further shortened future births. The government counts 17m more men aged 20 to 40 than women.
China’s population slowdown is probably happening as people move to cities and women’s education and income growth. Today, male-dominated leadership must fight a new generation of women. The daughters who survived had no siblings to fight for resources, resulting in a highly educated and ambitious group of post-1980s women.
Population policies often have unintended consequences. Ye Liu, a lecturer at King’s College London documenting women born in the 1980s, says that while the two-child policy theoretically gave her interviewees more options, this they retreat from it. “At the peak of their careers, they felt they had lost their advantages – their employers doubted they could have another child,” Liu said.
The relaxation of the policy of having a child seems to have no effect on the weight of parenting. Women now live through their share of scandals, from infant formula of vaccines – They want to be less worried. Now that local governments are coming up with a trash can of pro-birth policies, it’s time for the most radical intervention of all: building public parental services that can be trusted.