In 1979, the Population and Family Planning Commissions of China established a policy, which is the unique policy of China in the world, called the One-Child policy. According to the BBC News in the report of “China Steps Up ‘One Child‘ Policy,” The ‘one child’ policy stipulates each couple living in the cities should only have one child, unless one or both of the couple are from an ethnic minority or they are both only children, and it will be a permanent policy.
Granted, this policy helped the Chinese government control the newborn population and stop fast growth of population; however, some serious social problems associated with the establishment of the One-Child policy occurred, and anxieties or worries from the community arose. Furthermore, much negative news about brutal performing process of the One-Child policy was disseminated and sparked outrage. All of these problems call for the changes on the One-Child policy immediately, and the voice of abandon the policy occurs.
Many countries or individuals against One-Child policy for this policy abuse the basic right of human, the right to live. Furthermore, lots of countries in the world prohibit abortion or restrict it very strictly. However, according to the report of “Heave Fine for the Violators of One-Child Policy,” Mingai Zhang states, in China, if a couple violates the One-Child policy, having an extra child, they have to pay more than twenty thousands dollar fine for this child; in addition, double penalization for the third one.
Most of Chinese families cannot afford such a heavy fine, and the only way they can choose is abortion, even thought they want the baby. In addition, the patterns to perform the policy are unacceptable and cruel. According to Mcelroy, a 2001 report exposed that a quota of 20,000 abortions and sterilizations was set for Huaiji County and Guangdong Province in one year due to reported disregard of the One-Child policy. Furthermore, the report also shows that women as far along as 8. 5 months pregnant were forced to abort by injection of saline solution.
In Steven W. Mosher’s book of “A mother’s ordeal: one woman’s fight against China’s one-child policy,” It also reports that some of women, in their 9th month of pregnancy or already in in labor, having their children killed whilst in the birth canal or immediately after birth (Mosher). Even though Chinese government have prohibited to force women submit to abortion or sterilization, but it is not entirely enforced. In the respect of moral and ethics, the One-Child policy goes against the human right to live, and has caused a lot of tragedies in many families.
In Chinese traditional mindset, parents prefer boys to girls because boys are treated as the source of family income. As a result, some families may abandon their female babies to hide the fact that they already have the first child, even infanticide will happen. Although the One-Child policy helped China reduce the growth of population effectively; however, based on the research of Zeng, the One-Child policy contributes to gender-selected abortion, abandonment, and infanticide, and bring several negative consequences violated the human right to China (284).
The bloody facts expose that the One-Child policy goes against the human right to live, and it is contrary to morality and ethics. In the past period, Chinese government had to focus on the solving the problem of quick increase of population, and neglected the moral and ethical issue; however, the growth of population is under the control in present, and it is not the primary problem to China, thus we needn’t the One-Child policy anymore. Even if the policy cannot be stopped, the patterns to perform the policy need to be more humanistic and flexible in order to avoid such tragedies.
In addition, the aging problem is also the negative consequence caused by the One-Child policy, and it is affect the economy of China harmfully. Before the One-Child policy was established, China suffered a “birth boom” because the government encouraged all families to produce more productivity for the country, to have as many as possible babies. The population of the generations before the One-Child policy is huge, and then the birth rate was restricted and reduced greatly. As a result, as the generations before the One-Child policy reach old age, China faces the aging problem rapidly.
The aging population will bring several social problems to China, especially in the aspect of productivity. When the majority of population retires and needs more subsidies and care from both government and families, thus productivity will decrease immediately and affect economy greatly. In the David Piper’s report of “China’s One Child Policy Brings the Challenge of an Aging Population,” it is shows, at present, in China, the ratio of working-age population to the population above 65 years old is 9:1, but in 2050, it will be 2:1(Piper).
If China does not stop or adjust the One-Child policy, the aging problem is likely to be thornier than the population problem because the lack of productive force. The primary purpose of the One-Child policy is to control the population and thereby improve the living standard of residents; however, if this policy brings the seriously unbalanced population to China, does it benefit our country? Definitely it is not the policy that we want, and it might be the time to abandon the policy.
In another aspect, the social aging problem is really costly, and it will add a heavy burden to both of the government and individuals who need to support whole family by themselves. Furthermore, according to Piper in the article of “China’s One Child Policy Brings the Challenge of an Aging Population,” the government has to spend more labor power, material resources, and financial resources to support such a beg aged population; for instance, providing more old-age pension and endowment insurance, and using more labor power to engage in the services for the aged.
In addition, According to Li in the article of “ ‘Four-two-one Families’, Where is the road going,” she states, for individual families, because of the restriction of policy, as the first generation of law-enforced only children came of age for becoming parents themselves, one adult child was left with having to provide support for his or her two parents and four grandparents, and it is called the “4-2-1” problem. The “4-2-1” problem definitely adds more pressure on the only working-age people, the only source of income of the family.
It is impossible to support six people by one’s work, and the daily expenses is high, especially the medical expenses. Everyone has limited ability and energy to work and support his or her family; however, if people fail to support and take care of their parents and grandparents, the old people will surfer a hard life. Therefore, aged population will make the government and individuals more pressured, and supporting the old will become a serious social problem.
For now, the growth of population of China has been controlled effectively and enters the stable stage, and the primary problem of China is no longer the population problem, thus it is the time to abandon the inappropriate policy for the future development of China. In conclusion, even though the One-Child policy regulates the population in China, but in the current circumstance, it also cause several negative consequences, such as violating the human right, adding burden to our government, causing negative effect to economy, and it does not improve the quality of population as it’s original purpose.
Since the One-Child policy is not appropriate for the current China, we need to consider that whether we need to maintain the One-Child policy as a permanent policy. We should not ignore the facts that the One-Child policy has more harms than benefits to China and be obstinate to finish the plan that we set. Although terminating the One-Child policy directly is unrealistic, we can do some revisions on this policy.
The policies need to be reformed follow the change of times, we can choose some less intrusive options, including those that emphasized delay and spacing of births, could achieve the same results over an extended period of time and avoid negative consequences caused by the One-Child policy at the same time.
“China steps up ‘one child’ policy. ” BBCNEWS. MMIII, Inc. , 25 Sep. 2000. Web. 15 Nov. 2012. Zhang, Mingai. “Heavy Fine for Violators of One-Child Policy. ” CHINA. ORG. CN. n. p. 18 Sep. 2007. Web. 15 Nov. 2012. Mcelroy, Damien. “Chines region ‘must conduct 20,000 abortion’. ” The Telegraph.
Telegraph Media Group Limited, 05 Aug. 2001. Web. 15 Nov. 2012. Mosher, Steven W. A mother’s ordeal: one woman’s fight against China’s one-child policy. Virginia: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1993. Print. Zeng, Yi. “Causes and Implications of the Recent Increase in the Reported Sex Ratio at Birth in China. ” Population and Development Review June 1993: 283-302. Print. David Piper. “China’s One-Child Policy Brings the Challenge of an Aging Population. ” Fox News. Fox News Network, LLC. 28 April 2011. Web. 15 Nov. 2012. Li, Wen. “ ‘Four-two-one Families’, Where is the road going? ” Yunnan Daily. n. p. 31 Jan. 2011. Web. 15 Nov. 2012
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