December 24, 2018


The Politics of Population Control: How Western family planners helped curb the birth of girls in developing countries, the effects of which are felt today. (Al Jazeera, 24 Dec 2018)

While international pressure has compelled India and China to ban the use of ultrasounds for the purpose of sex-selective abortions, boys are more prized in these regions because they are looked upon as having an economically productive future, while women are not. As parents grow older they expect much more help and support from their independent sons than from daughters who they believe become, for all intents and purposes, the property of their husbands' families after marriage.

This gendercide is a result of politically motivated population control policies imposed more than 30 years ago by well-known scientists and extremely wealthy men like John D Rockefeller III who had access to the highest levels of the US government.

Their organisations, such as the Ford Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Population Council, which still exist today, triggered worldwide fears of a population explosion, according to Matthew Connelly, a historian at Columbia University in New York. He has researched in detail the development of this movement from its beginnings to its effects today. 

"The Population Council saw its mandate not just to control the rate of population growth, but also to address problems in the quality of population. So they had an explicit mandate to try to do something about the growth of the fertility rates among people who they thought would eventually take over the world if something wasn't done to reduce fertility rates across the board. But especially among people who they thought would be poor parents that would have even more poor children."

The fear of poor people having children gained steam in American politics by 1966, where US president Lyndon B Johnson attached conditions to receiving development aid, one of them being that recipient countries must reduce their population.

This eventually led to the creation of the United Nations Population Fund, which actively channelled millions into population control campaigns in South Korea, China, and India - including forced sterilisations and the mandatory use of contraceptives by poorer segments of society.

Posted by at December 24, 2018 6:14 PM