Bipartisan Group Decries Gendercide in China

House Members, All Girls Allowed, Amnesty International & demographic experts highlight the perils and anti-female bias of gendercide policies

Rep. Chris Smith

Yesterday Congressman Chris Smith, chairman of the House panel that oversees global human rights, held a bipartisan press conference —officially Children’s Day in China—on the gender imbalance in China brought about by the government’s brutally enforced one-child policy and its impact on trade and national security.

Amnesty International, All Girls Allowed, and demographers from the American Enterprise Institute and Texas A&M University spoke of the alarming lack of girls in the young generation of Chinese. In some areas of China only 100 girls are allowed to be born for every 170 boys. Tens of millions of Chinese men will be unable to find wives. The impact of gender selection in India was also discussed, as was the sex trafficking and child-bride trafficking associated with gender imbalance.

“Since 1979—the year the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) and the Chinese Government launched the one child per couple policy, which makes sisters and brothers illegal—gendercide in China has exploded,” said Smith, a senior member on the House Foreign Affairs Committee and member of the Congressional-Executive Commission on China. “Gendercide has led to other predictable consequences including and especially sex trafficking.”

Smith,  who is the co-chairman of the Congressional Human Trafficking Caucus, was joined by Reps. Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.), Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-Tx.), Joe Pitts (R-Pa.), and Frank Wolf (R-Va.).

“Several of my colleagues from both sides of the aisle are here today to show our bi-partisan concern about this critical issue,” Smith said. “As I often say – partisan politics have no place in the defense of fundamental human rights, and our joint efforts are an affirmation of that principle.”

The following are excerpts from Congressman Smith’s statement.

I welcome the representatives of the media who are joining us today for this historic initiation of a bi-partisan coalition to end one of the most horrific human rights abuses of our time – the barbaric practice of killing girls because they are girls.

The film was thoroughly compelling in the way it showed the chilling callousness of a parent – a mother – who kills her baby because she is a girl. A new Canadian study issued just last month indicates that sex-selection abortion has killed 12 million girls in India over the past 30 years.  As the film indicated, the male to female ratio in some parts of China is as high as 170 males to 100 females.  Tens of millions of Chinese men will never be able to marry because potential wives don’t exist.

But as the short film clip that we just watched brings home so profoundly, we are not just talking about numbers here, as mind-numbingly large as those numbers may be.  We are talking about individual human beings – each one endowed by our Creator with all the rights and dignity inherent in every human being – whose most precious gift, the gift of life, has been taken away solely because that human being was a girl.

In China, the brutal reality is that no unborn girl is safe as long as forced abortion remains an integral part of the government’s vicious population control agenda.  The regime’s draconian one-child per couple policy ensures that many—perhaps most—unborn girls are destroyed through forced abortion.  Government population control cadres kidnap pregnant women and forcibly destroy their babies, impervious to the anguished pleas and sobs of the mother. 

Since 1979—the year the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) and the Chinese Government launched the one child per couple policy, which makes sisters and brothers illegal—gendercide in China has exploded.  Gendercide has led to other predictable consequences including and especially sex trafficking.

A recent report issued by All Girls Allowed documents hundreds of thousands of child brides trafficked between various parts of the country and the resulting hardship for girls and their families.

Both India and China can and must do more at all levels of society – in the family and community, as well as at the government level by enacting just and humane laws to ensure that every girl’s right to life, from the moment of conception and her well-being are protected and nurtured.

Several of my colleagues from both sides of the aisle are here today to show our bi-partisan concern about this critical issue.  As I often say – partisan politics have no place in the defense of fundamental human rights, and our joint efforts are an affirmation of that principle.  We also have several experts joining us, to provide greater insight into the broader social, economic and security implications of gendercide. 

The film ends by noting that the most dangerous three words in the world today are “it’s a girl.”  That applies whether or not it the child is in the womb or at birth.

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