My baby! My baby!

by

In the news today, Chinese police have busted open a child kidnapping gang:

Police crack China baby sale gang:

They were sold for between 860 yuan ($125, £86) and 26,000 yuan ($3,800), the Beijing News said.

The children, mostly toddlers aged two or three years old, were snatched in Hunan province’s Yueyang city while they were playing or sleeping.

Police in southern China have broken up a gang that abducted migrant workers’ children to sell in distant provinces, state media reports.

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If it’s not children being kidnapped, it’s cat’s and dogs being stolen, or something else. There are so many deep-rooted issues in China. Sure, it’s a developing country, but the road to being first world is a long one. Particularly when you’re managing a population the size of China – over 1.3 billion.

So why do the kids get kidnapped and sold? It’s easy really – a side-effect of the one child policy. Families in most cases are limited to one child. Some of the richer folk can fork out money and pay for a second – or some of the poorer just have a second anyway and are fined by the government. Kids in China are a crucial part of the cultural make-up. You work your fingers to the bone making peanuts, all the while supporting your parents who in return supported you when you were young. When you grow older and start making money, your kids then support you – and life repeats itself; over and over and over.

The massive earthquake in Sichuan province killed thousands, many of them children.

The massive earthquake in Sichuan province killed thousands, many of them children.

Imagine the grief of the parents who lost their children in the Sichuan earthquakes. I am willing to bet a large portion of that grief directly related to the family effectively coming to a hold. It’s a serious deal in China. And worse – hundreds of kids had limbs amputated to free them from the rubble. I believe families affected in these ways were granted special privileges to have an extra child. It’s just that important.

So families live off their children. It’s the common consensus that males are far more valuable(from an employment point of view) so families were known to ‘get rid of’ or take steps again, having female children. In the kidnapping story, it was reported one child was outright abandoned when it was revealed she was in fact female. Already there are massive female shortages in China. Thousands of females are immigrating overseas where they can get a far better lifestyle by marrying foreigners. Luckily there seems to be no shortage of, heh, foreign men looking precisely for some easy asian bride action.

No female, no family, no children – serious trouble for a Chinese male. That combination can immediately lead to a life of lonely poverty. The sad part is this is common in China, the division between rich and very poor is easy to see wherever you go.

Troubling times – that are only going to get worse as these deep-seeded problems grow into even bigger issues. One thing that did surprise me while in China was the sheer number of children. There were todders and babies absolutely everywhere. With the one child policy in effect, this surprised me. Here’s hoping China is the first to colonise the moon. They are sure as hell going to need extra landspace at some point in time. Already I can’t understand how they can feed all those mouths. Particularly if you are familiar with Chinese meals – there is an absolute over-abundance of food. Time will tell.

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