Sex-selective abortion - one MP bravely raises the religion/race factor
Today, October 11, is International Day of the Girl Child. It was established by the UN in 2011 “to recognize girls’ rights and the unique challenges girls face around the world.” It is a “girl’s right” not to be deleted from existence just because she’s a girl. It is the “unique challenge” of girls in China and India to emerge from their mothers’ wombs alive, so that they may draw breath upon this earth and see the light of day.So writes Reggie Littlejohn at Women's Rights Without Frontiers. He goes on to talk about the emerging situation here in the UK, where it appears that sex-selective abortion (ie of girls) is contingent only upon the "good faith" decision of two GPs. As others have observed, there has been no chorus of liberal disapproval; no feminist outcry; and no outrage from the dedicated Human Rightists of how this vile practice advances the cause of gender equality and women's rights.
For most of us, hearing “it’s a girl” is cause for enormous joy, happiness and celebration. But in many countries, this announcement is a death sentence. Experts estimate that up to 200 million women are missing in the world today due to gendercide, mostly in China and India.
This should not be a pro-choice or a pro-life issue. This is a human rights issue. Gendercide is violence against women and girls. No one supports the systematic elimination of females...
Littlejohn notes that very often gendercide is not a choice: "There is a strong correlation between sex-selective abortion and coercion. Crushing social, economic, political and personal pressures in cultures with a strong son preference trample women carrying girls. Women in these cultures hardly select their daughters for abortion. They are forced."
This was touched on briefly in this week's Westminster Hall debate on sex-selective abortion. Margot James asked Sir Edward Leigh: "Does he agree that whether that arises from the abortion of female fetuses or female infanticide, and whether it takes place in Bombay, Beijing or Birmingham, it is wrong?" Sir Edward, of course, agreed. But only Neil Parish MP was prepared to wade into the thorny religio-sociological reality that parts of Birmingham have effectively become Bombay, and so it's hardly surprising that alien cultural practices are permeating. It hasn't been widely reported (indeed, it hasn't been reported at all), so His Grace brings you Mr Parish's words:
Some lawyers and the CPS argue that practice is so lax that it is not possible to prosecute. What on earth is going on? I am not a lawyer, but I have some faith in the law of the land. However, why should people have faith in it, if shoddy practice allows perfectly healthy babies, of whatever sex, to be aborted? I shall be completely honest and open: I do not like abortion. I think it is carried out far too late, and I do not much like its being carried out at all. I accept that in exceptional circumstances, when there are very serious problems with a fetus, there could be an argument for it to be aborted; but not just because it does not suit someone’s lifestyle, religion or background.The abortion of baby girls because of the "religion or background" of the woman has scarcely been mentioned in the widespread reporting of the DPP's decision not to prosecute those GPs who approved the termination of a baby girl simply because it was a girl. The ethnicity of the woman has not been disclosed: "not in the public interest" was the reason given. But GPs may very well reason and sympathetically approve the abortion of a baby girl if a woman were at risk of physical or mental injury at the hands of male members of her community, and those GPs would doubtless be acting "in good faith". If you were living daily with 'expressions' of oppressive misogyny and coercive patriarchy, the termination of the baby girl may well be a matter of life and death for you.
I shall again say something a little controversial. Is it perhaps because the issue has something to do with race that we do not want to tackle it? Are we running scared because we live in this very politically correct world? Well, if that is the result of a politically correct country, I do not want to live in this role. This Parliament is about common-sense rules that are enforced. I am totally amazed and saddened that we must have this debate.(Hansard)
In some "religions or backgrounds", the pressure on wives to produce a male baby is crushing. With this sociological reality, what reasonable GP isn't going to approve "in good faith" the termination of a baby girl if the fate of the pregnant woman may otherwise be no better than that suffered by Anne Boleyn?