Post-World War II China produced a large number of babies as a part of the baby boomer generation. As a result, the most heavily populated country in the world experienced an exponential growth in their population unlike any other in the world. Because of the fear of depleting their already scarce food and water supply, the Chinese government implemented the One-Child Policy in 1979 (Wiseman 2002). Even though China is still leading the world population wise, with approximately 1.3 billion people, there is no doubt that the One-Child Policy has served to prevent that number from being up to three hundred million people more (Kahn 2004). However, many consequences have resulted from this policy, the most pressing one being the increasing gender imbalance.
As announced by the Chinese government in January 2005, the nationwide gender ratio is 119 boys per 100 girls born, while the rest of the world reports 105 boys born per 100 girls (Yardley 2005). This disparity is largely contributed to the high demand for males in rural areas, which make of seventy percent of China's total population (Junhong, pp. 262, 2001).
[...] At the Lanxi Middle School in Southeastern China, free tuition is provided to girls from poor families and those belonging to families of two girls (Yardley 2005). Changes like these are to emphasize the importance of women in society and to promote gender equity. China's initial overpopulation problem has led to population control measures (explicitly the One-Child Policy) that have in turn led to a gender imbalance that harms the future of the entire nation. The success and failure of the country is dependent on the correction of these problems. [...]
[...] Traditionally, rural families are large and full of sons so that everyone can contribute to the success of their agricultural endeavors: many men and boys to do physical labor, many women and girls to help with domestic matters around the house (Rosenthal 2003). More males are always favored because they can carry on family legacies through their name and inherit the land that their families cultivate. Also, boys are prized for their ability to do more laborious work on the farm; they contribute more to the family income (Yardley 2005). [...]
[...] There are many other abortions and female births that go underreported and contribute to this large gender imbalance. China is facing many serious repercussions from this ever increasing gender imbalance in their population. The first of which is supporting the aging population. Because there are fewer females in the population, the fertility rate is slowing, resulting in a smaller work force. Coupled with the rising longevity of Chinese people, the problem becomes that the smaller work force is not capable of supporting the larger already existing, and continually growing, retired work force (Kahn 2004). [...]
[...] Another consequence of the gender imbalance in China is the lack of females to produces families. Because there are fewer men than women, the women are more selective of their husbands. Many women migrate to the urban areas to find good factory jobs and marry men from these areas (Wiseman 2002). Rural, uneducated men cannot find wives because women are going to cities to work. In addition to infant trafficking (some children are sold to men and literally raised to be their brides), the kidnapping of rural Chinese women and Vietnamese and North Korean women contributes to the 250,000 being trafficked (Pomfret 2001). [...]
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