China’s One-Child Policy

China’s One-Child Policy

China Trends: Starbucks rejects coins, and an end to two-child policy?
Every Tuesday and Thursday, China Trends takes the pulse of the Chinese social media to keep you in the loop of what the world’s biggest internet population is talking about. Coins for coffee China’s digital payment revolution may have gone too far for some. Starbucks China was forced to apologize over the weekend after a viral video showed an employee refusing to accept coins as payment. The footage, which was shot at an unspecified location in China, sparked a backlash on social media from users who pointed out that it was illegal to reject coins or cash under Chinese law. In China, mobile payments have largely replaced cash as the norm for anything from dining at restaurants to paying tax
More Chinese babies are given maternal family name
Since January 1, 2016, when the nation eased its one-child policy to allow families to have two children, more parents are handing down a maternal family name.  Breaking with deeply-rooted tradition, some parents are now giving their firstborn child the father’s surname and the second child the mother’s name.
China is getting very old very fast
Every Tuesday and Thursday, Inkstone Index features a single, illuminating number that helps you make sense of China. 2022: the year when China is expected to officially become an “aged society.”  By 2022, one out of seven people in China will likely be aged 65 years or older, according to a report from the Chinese research firm Evergrande Research Institute. In 2019, that number was one in ten. An “aged society” is defined by the United Nations as a country where more than 14.3% of a population is at or above the age of 65. An “aging society” is when that age group makes up 7.2% of the total population.  China’s aging population, coupled with a low birth rate, is one of the most pressing pr
Unmarried women might get a win for gender equality in China
Women’s rights advocates have applauded a proposal to China’s top advisory body to expand access to assisted reproductive technology. This includes technologies such as in vitro fertilization and egg freezing – medical practices that are difficult to access for unmarried women in China. Under the country’s existing laws, unmarried women and couples who do not “comply with the population and birth-planning regulations” are banned from using those services at Chinese hospitals and agencies. Peng Jing, a member of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, an advisory body, submitted the proposal to the advisory body, which if adopted would give unmarried women the right to use ass
Why don’t Chinese women want more babies? It’s not just about money
It is often presumed that government policies are the main factors determining birth patterns in China. This may not be the case anymore. By the end of 2015, China ended the controversial one-child policy, allowing couples to have two children. A baby boom was expected. But it hasn’t materialized and it is very unlikely that it will. According to the National Bureau of Statistics, the birth rate in 2019 fell to 1.048, the lowest on record since the founding of the People’s Republic, except in 1961 when millions lost their lives in a widespread famine. After the Chinese Communist Party took power in 1949, Chairman Mao Zedong foolishly encouraged women to produce more children, believing that
How a 3am call and a secret inspire film remembering China’s abandoned children
One Sunday afternoon in February 2017, Chinese film director Yuchao Feng was in his flat in the US state of New Jersey when he received a phone call from his mother that would shock and inspire him. Feng knew something was wrong – not just because it was 3am in the northern Chinese city of Tianjin, where his mother, Wang Jingjing, was calling from, but because they rarely spoke. “My parents were not around much when I was growing up in Ningde,” says Feng, recalling the city of three million in Fujian province, in the country’s southeast, known for its tea cultivation. “And we talked even less after I moved to the US to study film in 2011.” Feng’s mother was having a nightmare similar to thos
China should ease pain from one-child policy repercussions
In 1992, I was abandoned as a baby and found in a public place in Hefei, China. For almost two years, I lived in an orphanage and with a foster mother. Then my adoptive mother flew me to Sacramento, California, where I grew up. My existence here in the United States is due to China’s infamous one-child policy, which was imposed for more than three decades before it was eased to a two-child policy in 2015.  I am one of more than 90,000 children adopted from China and raised in the US between 1992 and 2018.  About 40,000 other children went to families in the Netherlands, Spain and Britain. In her devastating poem, One Art, Elizabeth Bishop writes of loss in a way I relate to. She describes mi
Punishment for ‘unfilial’ children sparks debate over elderly care
A Chinese county’s move to punish “unfilial” people has fueled a debate over the state’s role in taking care of China’s rapidly aging population. Xunyang, one of the poorest counties in the northwestern Chinese province of Shaanxi, said last week it would punish people who fail to take good care of their elderly parents. Chinese people are customarily expected to care for their elderly parents. But the county’s plan to punish those who fail to provide financial support to their parents has triggered a backlash online. This is “the government saying it’s done caring for the elderly and the responsibility is now on the offspring,” one commentator wrote on China’s Twitter-like Weibo.  China is
Why Chinese people are outraged by Alabama’s abortion ban
Alabama’s move to ban nearly all abortions in the state has shaken a country divided over women’s right to terminate a pregnancy. But in China, there is no debate. On Twitter-like Weibo, social media users have overwhelmingly slammed the American state’s sweeping abortion ban. “You cannot even have abortions if you are impregnated by rape or incest? Are these people crazy?” said a top comment. The stark contrast underscores how a history of population control policies has helped shape views on abortion in the world’s most populous nation. “In America, abortion might be a debate of human rights, and specifically, women’s rights. But in China, it’s not an issue of rights but an issue of law a
The sperm-collecting machine helping China through hard times
Unlike seeing a dentist, where you lie down helplessly and let a doctor torment you, andrology – the study of male health – is one of the rare medical disciplines that can both involve pleasure and demand effort on the patient’s part. Enter the SW-3701 Sperm Extractor, a machine that takes the tedious labor of masturbation out of the process of collecting semen, for donation and diagnosis alike. Featuring a pink receptacle that mimics a vagina, the machine promises to be a hands-free solution to hospitals in a country that needs quality male healthcare more than ever. Chinese people are having fewer children – whether by choice or not – at a time when China needs babies the most in order to