Gendercide #trending?

December 13, 2011

Political economy, Political Theory


Just imagine you are a young couple expecting your first child, but influences like the traditional custom of preferring a son over a daughter are all around you. Now, imagine that you go to get that ultrasound you have been anxiously waiting for and the doctor announces that it is a girl. You and your family would prefer a boy so what do you do now? You would never dream of killing a baby daughter– as the rest of your village does, and your doctor even encourages an abortion, but would you do it?

For millions of couples, the answer is simple: to abort the daughter and try again for a son.These phenomenon exist in many societies; China and India are two of the most infamous supporters of this tradition. Most people know that these countries have an unnaturally large amount of boys, but do we even know or understand how bad this problem is?

This heartbreaking video, India’s Deadly Secret, depicts a “war” on baby girls, and how millions of girls have disappeared– and what’s worse– the number is rising. Abortion, murder, and neglection of a baby daughter, born or unborn is increasing at an alarming rate because girls are a financial burden to parents, especially in India, because the parents have to pay a high dowry to marry off their daughter.

A young woman finally stood up to authority and her husband to be able to keep her

twin daughters alive. She suffered from death threats, assaults, even death attempts made on her daughters and they were all from her husband and the family. It is sad that women are treated lowly in these countries and they are not able to have  a say or justification in their own actions. Mill believed in a society in which each individual leads his own distinctive life according to his own unique talents, unrestrained by regulations upon thought, opinion, and actions. So what would he say about this situation where a poor mother is being influenced by her family, village and doctor to kill her innocent baby girl. Why aren’t women’s viewpoints and opinions allowed to be shared freely in these countries?

Unfortunately, gendercide- sex selective abortions- is a common trend in India and China, as well as a few other countries, and women are victims of this dominant family ideology based on preference for male children. I am sure that these countries would not like being known for slaughtering young girls, so why is this still trending? This can almost be comparable to the holocaust where Hitler and his men wiped the lives of many innocent people. But in this case, it’s not in the hands of one man; it’s in the hands of the government and if nothing is done about it, millions more baby girls will be missing.

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4 Comments on “Gendercide #trending?”

  1. asgersh Says:

    The fact that these traditions still is in practice and such intolerance of women should be a more pressing issue with countries that see there job as “policing the world”. I am a strong believer in a woman’s right to choose whether she wants to have a child or not. More needs to be done by the international community to try to educate the youth in these countries that woman and men are equal and having a child, boy or girl, should be seen as a blessing. In many countries it is hard to break this trend because it is so deeply routed in their culture. There needs to be a way for outsiders to educate the people who practice aborting or killing children just because they are girls without making them feel as if their culture is being destroyed or attacked. If this trend continues the lack of women will have very negative effects on the growth and productivity of a nation. The international community should step in and show how the equal treatment of women is extremely beneficial to all parts of society. It needs to be instilled in these cultures that women are just as if not more capable then men.

  2. ethankurtzman Says:

    You raise an interesting point by bringing up John Stewart Mill. I believe this issue is very similar to the pressing issue of abortion rights in America. Though gendercide is undoubtedly more extreme, both relay back to a woman’s right to chose and the pressure she receives for the decision she makes. Mill stresses the preservation of personal rights and beliefs which is why this situation is somewhat tricky. People who practice gendercide do it in order to protect their cultural beliefs; however, their actions have the potential to invade a woman’s basic human rights. Practicers of gendercide have the right to protest a woman’s decision to keep a female child but Mill would argue that their rights are waved when physical harm is imparted upon a woman.

    My opinion for these women, fight back. Not physically like supporters of gendercide do but vocally and unified. In scenarios like these, education is not enough to change a cultural belief, the change needs to come from within the culture.

  3. maddycaroline Says:

    This just proves how much inequality and ignorance there is left in this world. Most importantly, these people need to understand that society cannot consist solely of men because obviously parthenogenesis does not exist but also that women are an important part of any society in other ways. Before even trying to keep selective abortions from happening, the international community needs to help make women equal in society. It is at the point in countries such as India and China, that most women can’t (and don’t) even try to fix their situation because they are raised to believe what the men believe. In today’s world, woman can achieve just as much as men because although men are considered to be physically stronger then women, they are no more intelligent. However, even if you think about our country in the 19th century, women were not seen in the same way as men. Eventually were able to get over that discrimination in part due to the ideology of our country, and the strive for equality for all. But elsewhere, this is not the same. Countries such as India and China especially are inching their way to become leaders in the world economy, but despite this there are still many parts of these countries that are stuck in the far past, especially when it comes to gender equality. To achieve this, however, women have to prove themselves to their society because otherwise no one will pay attention to what they are trying to achieve. Women in the United States, sadly, had to do the same exact thing and if that is the only way that women will be treated equally in their societies, then that’s what needs to be done. The international community needs to help these women first understand that they are in no way unequal to men, and second help them to be seen as equals then only after that will gender-based abortion become less common.

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