A disclaimer; In writing this I am attempting to put aside my personal abhorrence at the unnecessary taking of life.
The trend to kill baby girls via sex-selective abortion is governed by deeply held beliefs. Beliefs lead to practices/ behaviours and sometimes the behavioural consequences go further than initially perceived by the believers. A recent article, Trend to Kill Baby Girls Gets UN Attention sets out the case:
For example, killing baby girls leads to demographic consequences, more males than females, and hence to economic impacts and threat to global peace.
The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) filed a motion called “Sex-selective abortion — ‘Gendercide'” in May 2010 (Doc. 12258), inviting the member states of the Council of Europe to “condemn sex-selective abortion, wherever and whenever it occurs.”
The report notes the preference for male offspring, “especially in cultures or countries where family sizes are constrained.”It highlights the plight of China — where 124 boys are born for every 100 girl — as well as India, South Korea, Taiwan and even some European countries.The European Centre for Law and Justice noted:“Considering possible consequences of this ‘gendercide,’ the document affirms that this ‘gender imbalance constitutes a serious threat for global security. The selective pre-natal killing of females will in the near future lead to a further radical decline of birth rates, which could dangerously undermine the sustainability of entire national economies.’ The motion also mentions the negative consequences of future male-dominated populations where men are unable to find wives and start a family.”
This month, five U.N. agencies issued a joint statement on “Preventing gender-biased sex selection.”The statement notes that while the biologically normal sex ratio at birth ranges from 102 to 106 males per 100 females, ratios higher than normal — sometimes as high as 130 — have been observed.
Killing baby girls is literally death to them and figuratively death to all of us. John Donne’s poem is ringing in my ears with a particular irony, ‘No man is an island entire of itself …’
Killing baby girls should be stopped. How? By persuading people to follow beliefs that are life giving.
During my recent leave I reread Viktor Frankl’s ‘Man’s Search for Meaning’ which relates his experiences as a Nazi concentration camp inmate. He concludes that holding a belief is what gives a person the strength to go on – even amongst suffering and death.
Ideas shape life. What we believe matters. Ideas have consequences. Ideas shape deeds.
Easter belief holds life-giving meaning.