Tag Archives: China

The Cinch Review

The Image of Forced Abortion that has Shaken China

It was an image circulated via Twitter and other on-line resources which set off the recent backlash in China against the practice of forced abortion.

Forced abortion in China

(Via the Daily Caller.)

The mother had been seven months pregnant when she was physically dragged to a hospital and injected with a toxic substance to kill the baby inside her womb. The couple already had one child, and could not come up with the necessary cash to pay a “fine” which would have permitted them to have one more, under China’s one-child policy. Continue reading The Image of Forced Abortion that has Shaken China

The Cinch Review

Suspensions and apology follow forced abortion in China

Following up on a previous post (“Forced abortion: A tipping point in China?”): Authorities in China have taken steps designed to defuse public outrage after a widely publicized case of forced abortion. The fact of forced abortion (and forced sterilization) is nothing new in China, where a “one-child policy” has been enforced for decades, but what was different in this case was the rapid circulation via the Internet and Twitter of this particular story, accompanied by a photograph of the devastated woman (who had been beaten in advance of the “procedure”) with the bloodied corpse of her nearly full-term child beside her in the hospital. The woman and her husband already had one child, and were unable to come up with a “fine” of 40,000 yuan (roughtly $6,300) which would have “allowed” them to give birth to a second. Continue reading Suspensions and apology follow forced abortion in China

The Cinch Review

Forced abortion: A tipping point in China?

Via CNN:

On Sina Weibo, China’s equivalent of Twitter, the case was among the top trending topics Thursday afternoon, attracting almost a million comments.

Most users appear to side with the couple and condemn the officials. “Bring the murderers to justice” was a commonly posted demand.

It is a case of forced abortion—out of the millions that have taken place—which seems to have struck a deep chord with many people in China. The Chinese authorities have actually issued an apology in this case, in which a woman who was seven months pregnant had her baby ripped out of her womb and killed solely on the grounds that she and her husband could not come up with the requisite “fine” in order to legally have the baby.

The story is apparently receiving an unprecedented level of attention in China, and I do not think that its potential resonance should be underestimated.

The Chinese have many reasons to be unhappy with their elitist rulers, but inertia has always outweighed the momentum of change. This particular issue has a visceral power beyond all others.

“I wish this case could be the turning point in China’s family planning policy, to comfort the spirit of this child in heaven,” wrote Zheng Haitao, a financial magazine editor.

He Yafu, an independent demographer, said any hope of change must await the party leadership transition this fall and a new Cabinet next spring. He advocates abolition of the policy and says doing so would have minimal effect on China’s birthrate. A major obstacle is that authorities have come to rely on the fines they can levy, He said.

Ignoring threats warning him not to get involved, lawyer Zhang Kai said he was traveling to Shaanxi to assist the couple.

“I think governments shouldn’t ‘plan’ family planning, it’s the citizen’s right,” Zhang said. “God won’t allow humans to do forced abortions, and he’s unhappy to see it.”

The Cinch Review

On China: Bob Dylan speaks

Just when you think you’ve seen everything, the truly unbelievable happens. Bob Dylan has actually responded to a controversy that others ginned up about him! The statement on his website is titled: “To my fans and followers.”

I’ll copy some of it here, but I will pause to crow a little bit. Those of us who were extremely dubious that Dylan was in fact playing from a censored set list have been utterly vindicated. (Of-course some will argue Dylan is lying, but those will generally be people who are still on the hunt for Bin Laden.) He states that all he did in response to Chinese requests to know what he would play was send them “the set lists from the previous 3 months.” He received no instructions whatsoever about censoring songs: “and we played all the songs that we intended to play.” Continue reading On China: Bob Dylan speaks