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What happens when you dilly-dally with Mother Nature?Posted Tuesday, January 12, 2010, at 11:11 AM
The news out of Beijing, China this morning is so predictable that I wonder it even made it out.
It seems that 24 million Chinese men of marrying age face the possibility of remaining alone the rest of their lives.
And Chinese officials didn't see this one coming?
In 1979, the Chinese government took the drastic step of controlling its spiraling population increase by adopting the "one-child" policy. As a result, Chinese families put their baby girls in over-crowded orphanages to face who-knows-what, while the families "tried again" to have a boy baby.
When the use of ultrasound technology became prevalent in the late 80's, women could determine the sex of their babies, so it was easy for them to abort the female fetuses.
Current figures from China (Pop. 1.3 billion) say that the country "has averted 400 million births" since that time.
What did they expect? If you're going to monkey around with Mother Nature in such a callous fashion, you can expect your policies to have bad consequences.
Some of these disastrous consequences:
* Men with lower incomes are having trouble finding wives.
* The lack of wives is causing "a break in family lines."
* The chance of getting married is rare if a man is more than 40 years old in the countryside. As a result, these men will be more dependent on social security as they age and have fewer household resources to rely on.
* Abductions and trafficking of women are "rampant" in areas with a high ratio of men.
* "Illegal" marriages and forced prostitution are also problems in the areas overpopulated with men.
I have often wondered about the social status of the female orphans who manage to make it to adulthood. This new report makes me wonder if those women are the ones who are being "forced into prostitution." How could these poor lost souls possibly be considered "acceptable wives" in a hide-bound system like China?
It's possible to draw all sorts of lessons from this country's experiments in social management. I'm also sure that we, as a Christian nation, can make some observations along those lines as well.
The Soviet Union dissolved in 1989; if and when the Communist government of China meets the same fate, it will leave a wide-spread path of destruction behind it.
From the sunny streets of Advance, Mo. in the far northern stretches of Stoddard County, Southeast Missouri, this is your rural reporter, Madeline, hoping for a warm up.
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Madeline (Giles) DeJournett is the Advance writer for the North Stoddard Countian. A retired high school English/history teacher, she spent 32 years teaching in 5 schools in Missouri and Alaska. These days, she lives quietly with a menagerie of wild and domestic animals on 52 secluded acres in the remote Tillman hills south of Advance. She graduated from Dexter High School in 1960 and Southeast Missouri State in 1964. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.