Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Another Bitter Irony for Feminism

Colleen Carroll Campbell writes a disturbing column today documenting the shift in the ratio of male to female births in countries like India, China and . . . the United States? The clear culprit in this unsettling trend is not (for a refreshing change) "global warming" but, rather, sex-selective abortion. I realize that this may come as a shock to some people, but it turns out that in many cultures people prefer to raise sons. The technology and the ideology of choice have empowered that preference for a generation and we are now witness to the result.

Campbell rightly points to other likely outcomes of this genius empowerment: a shortage of some 30 million females in China alone by the year 2020. This shortage is sure to lead to more exploitation of women in the form of early and forced marriage, kidnapping, rape, forced prostitution or sex slavery, and other forms of violence. And I’m not even going to speculate about the world political consequences of all that extra (and frustrated) testosterone walking around . . .

Campbell calls this development a "bitter irony" and she is dead right. The irony is that access to abortion and other forms of neo-natal technology were supposed to liberate women from some of the more burdensome and difficult aspects of their nature. We took away the power that nature held over our fates and gave ourselves the "right" to make independent decisions (ha!, wink, wink--nod, nod) about what is best for our own bodies. No longer would a woman be forced into multiple and unwanted pregnancies only to remain in a condition of thankless servitude to a man . . . This empowerment was supposed to create a new dawn of equality and to end misogyny, wasn’t it? Perhaps it turns out that the best way to end misogyny (or at least keep it in check) is to work with nature--creating a good and decent civilization where life is respected--rather than working against nature as if She were the enemy.

Discussions - 4 Comments

In a talk several years ago in Claremont, AEI scholar Nick Eberstadt detailed the differences between Asian and other cultures on sex-selection. A Korean student of mine a year ago told the class the male-female ratio there was something like 1.25 to 1. Some Asian countries are importing women from others.

As did Eberstadt in his talk, Campbell adds some intriguing stats about Asian-American attitudes toward sex-selection abortions.

Julie, exactly. Well said.

Well, human life in the world is generally cheap and always has been. It is one of the great constants of humanity.

So, it should be no surprise that today, the unborn human life is also held low and that abortion has not helped humanity in any positive way.


I cannot agree with you more. When people care more about banning horse slaughter in the United States (to save the horses'lives) than banning abortion (the slaughter of unborn children) one has to wonder what the heck has happened to logical, morality and ethics.

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