March 13, 2010

The Small, Still Foot of a Nothing

Justin Katz

Any attempt to mitigate this scene, from an Economist article, is necessarily founded in either evil or self-delusion:

XINRAN XUE, a Chinese writer, describes visiting a peasant family in the Yimeng area of Shandong province. The wife was giving birth. "We had scarcely sat down in the kitchen", she writes, "when we heard a moan of pain from the bedroom next door...The cries from the inner room grew louder—and abruptly stopped. There was a low sob, and then a man's gruff voice said accusingly: 'Useless thing!'

"Suddenly, I thought I heard a slight movement in the slops pail behind me," Miss Xinran remembers. "To my absolute horror, I saw a tiny foot poking out of the pail. The midwife must have dropped that tiny baby alive into the slops pail! I nearly threw myself at it, but the two policemen [who had accompanied me] held my shoulders in a firm grip. 'Don't move, you can't save it, it's too late.'

"'But that's...murder...and you're the police!' The little foot was still now. The policemen held on to me for a few more minutes. 'Doing a baby girl is not a big thing around here,' [an] older woman said comfortingly. 'That's a living child,' I said in a shaking voice, pointing at the slops pail. 'It's not a child,' she corrected me. 'It's a girl baby, and we can't keep it. Around these parts, you can't get by without a son. Girl babies don't count.'"

In the final analysis, that's abortion: a dead child in a bucket who "doesn't count." The reason can be the mother's career ambitions. The parents' dislike of each other. Or even the inconvenient season during which the pregnancy would ensue. Society cannot carve out an exception to proscriptions of murder for parents to kill their children without moral and practical consequences.

In the case of China, one such consequence is an imbalanced society that Western liberals would despise were it not a sacrifice on the altar of abortion:

The number is based on the sexual discrepancy among people aged 19 and below. According to [Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS)], China in 2020 will have 30m-40m more men of this age than young women. For comparison, there are 23m boys below the age of 20 in Germany, France and Britain combined and around 40m American boys and young men. So within ten years, China faces the prospect of having the equivalent of the whole young male population of America, or almost twice that of Europe’s three largest countries, with little prospect of marriage, untethered to a home of their own and without the stake in society that marriage and children provide.

Whether one seeks to derive morality from Christian ethics or a vague sense of a natural order, human beings must be treated as ends in themselves if we're to avoid the ostensibly unintended consequences that occur when individualist and utilitarian calculations claim dominance over the right to life itself.

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China will undergo great cultural and economic strain as a result of its overpopulation of males. Young males show the greatest proclivity towards violence and without the natural boundaries created by marriage and family and the commensurate outlet for their tensions, there will a be need, presumably by the state (army?) to re-direct their energies so that society does not erupt into chaos. This should be of great concern to the rest of the world.

The other issue is the incentivization factor; current Chinese culture strongly incentivizes having a son; hence this horrific and well-tolerated act of killing newborn girls. In the US, we incentivize unmarried girls and women to have babies, as these generational welfare queens mooch off of society. 70% of hispanic newborns are born to unwed mothers. 50% of black newborns are born to unwed mothers. This will create great cultural and economic challenges in the US as these populations become the majority and the culture of unwed motherhood shifts from minority to majority status. How do we control the devastating implications of that on our country?

BTW This is not a race question, it is a question of the consequences of unwed motherhood, particularly amongst teenagers, and the commensurate economic and social implications.

Posted by: MadMom at March 13, 2010 4:23 PM

Could we get a blog post on the Child Abuse stories which seem to be rising up to the level of the pope now?

As a Christian, this would seem to be a story worth of your moral insights.

What are the social implications of thousands or tens of thousands of children abused at the hands of Priests?

Posted by: Stuart at March 13, 2010 7:33 PM

Or by ANYONE?WTF?It doesn't matter who abuses a child.What matters is making sure they don't get a chance to do repeats.But that's not happening,unfortunately.

Posted by: joe bernstein at March 13, 2010 9:14 PM

Well Stuart, since you've gratuitously raised the subject,what are the social implications of the abhorrent conduct by some priests, and media coverage of it that deliberately overlooked the fact that nearly all of those acts of pedophilia were homosexual pedophilia?

Why did the media keep this homosexual aspect in the closet, so to speak?

Since the gay rights advocates tell us that homosexuality is innate and not a choice, then the propensity to engage in homosexual conduct was in place before those individuals entered the priesthood -- so what does this pedophilia tell us about the innate nature of homosexuals?

What does it say about such individuals chose to become part of a religion in which their innate proclivities are considered sinful?

Posted by: Ragin' Rhode Islander at March 13, 2010 9:15 PM

Not to perpetuate the absurd tangent, but one important note:

Joe: The vast majority of cases were in the '70s and early '80s, so "not happening" in the present tense isn't really accurate.

Posted by: Justin Katz at March 13, 2010 9:27 PM

Justin-drug dealers do more time on average than child abusers(sexual or otherwise)-how f*cked up is that?
I personally had a guy who assaulted a 7 month old girl-he fractured her skull,broke 4 ribs,and stuck her over 30 times with a hatpin.Oh,he didn't sexually asssault her.How nice of him.
He admitted everything to me.His bail?$500 cash.The judge should have been hung.he posted bail and fled the country.He was one of the local left's "undocumented workers".
Of course,I'm making this all up.Some liberals are unable to process these kinds of truths.

Posted by: joe bernstein at March 13, 2010 9:52 PM

Oh. I didn't mean to suggest that nothing like that happens. I was referring specifically to the cases previously mentioned.

Posted by: Justin Katz at March 13, 2010 10:05 PM

Justin, you have blinders on if you think this is not happening now - as well as in the past. Sure, they may only abuse 11 boys now as opposed to 90 before (each), but it is not some kind of anomaly, it is relatively "normal" (ouch) behavior for those who suppress their sexuality.

It seems really strange that you are down on homosexuality and family planning, while being the member of a club that seems to revel in both homosexuality and child abuse.

If this was anything other than the Church, it would have been outlawed and cast out of our lives decades ago.

In the end, this probably affects more people than terrorism, of which the right has determined that only the extinction of the Muslim faith will solve.

Could this be yet another case of "oh, thou hypocrites".

Fact is that, since the Enlightenment - something our founders put their "faith" in, we have no need for science fiction and hierarchy any longer. No one need tell us what to do -we can read the scriptures, philosophers and tea leaves ourselves. This is not to disavow spirituality, in fact it is nothing but another reformation where We The People have thrown off the shackles of false leaders and each made our peace with the spirit.

Posted by: Stuart at March 14, 2010 8:57 AM

If Stuart things he has thrown off the shackles of false leaders, then why do he and the other Statists here want to shackle us again with their own false leaders?

Most of us recoiled in horror while reading "1984". Stuart and his friends took notes.

Posted by: BobN at March 14, 2010 9:11 AM

Bob-excellent point."1984" used to be descriptive of communism and fascism(and "Animal Farm"),but these books are getting more relevant currently.
Some of the leftists are in denial-they don't want to accept that there are people out there who want to incinerate because they believe they are such humanitarians,who would hurt them?
Stuart called me an anti-semite?Hard to take coming from a bigot like him.
He throws out numbers from his mind-no specific source,mind you.
I have no clue what Stuart is,but he just sounds like a pumped up version of many other leftists.Not all,but quite a few.
I'm the last person here who wants to debate religious concepts,because I think it's a personal matter.That said,I'm not the least offended by religious reference in public life-and not just pallid "non denominational"stuff either.
If you know the words to "The Battle Hymn of the Republic" you will see that the references are very specific.I think the Stuarts of the world would obliterate that song from the ear of the public.Hell,they'd like to obliterate most of us here.
What's perversely comical is that many of those they champion from afar would cut their throats,decapitate them,and piss in the hole for the hell of it.
It's good that these demented interlopers expose their thoughts here.I mean,without them,it would be preaching to the choir(uh,oh..religious reference)and that's boring.
I'm not belittling the abuse of children by rogue priests nor the coverups,but since I'm not Catholic and the rest of my family is Protestant I guess this is an issue for Catholics to address,aside from criminal proceedings against the malefactors.

Posted by: joe bernstein at March 14, 2010 10:24 AM

The other comic irony is that they fancy themselves O'Briens (inner Party members) while they are doomed to be mere Winston Smiths, living in hovels and raging in their daily 2-minute hate sessions until someone denounces them and they end up in Room 101.

Of course, they are already performing their 2-minute hate sessions right here on Anchor Rising.

Posted by: BobN at March 14, 2010 12:20 PM


You claim the philosophy of the Enlightenment as your guide, yet you seem quite comfortable giving a free pass to the radical Islamist movement which claims that Islamic law is fundamental as physical law; here is one of the ruminations on the subject from early-modern Islamist philosopher Sayid Qutb...

Islam, which is a way of life, takes practical steps to organize a movement for freeing man. Other societies do not give it any opportunity to organize its followers according to its own method, and hence it is the duty of Islam to annihilate all such systems, as they are obstacles in the way of universal freedom. Only in this manner can the way of life be wholly dedicated to God, so that neither any human authority nor the question of servitude remains, as is the case in all other systems which are based on man's servitude to man....Jihaad in Islam is simply a name for striving to make this system of life dominant in the world.
I'm going to go out on a limb and say the philosophers of the Enlightenment wouldn't have gone for this. I also believe that most members of the Muslim faith don't believe this either, though it's not something I can prove.

Tell me, do you believe that the position of vigorously opposing those who would use large-scale violence to act on the ideology described above is equivalent to the position that -- your words now -- that Muslims should be exterminated? And if so, does that mean that we can say your opposition to elements of Christianity is equivalent to your wanting to see all Christians exterminated?

Posted by: Andrew at March 14, 2010 12:41 PM

Andrew, I think you miss my point!

We have on one hand, a media feeding us stories 24/7 about two "Jihad Janes" who we should be scared of because they are plotting a conspiracy (that would never happen) to off some cartoonist in Sweden - while at the same time, we are paying almost no attention to a conspiracy and plot and real world situations which are harming thousands or millions.

I respect many aspects of culture and religion - mostly the former!

As to religion, I judge a tree by it's fruits. But I do find the hypocritical thing to be quite telling - that folks such as Justin will rant all day long about reproductive choice, gays and certain chosen subjects, while somehow forgetting about many other things right in front of his face. Basic fairness requires that we don't be too selective in our damning of others (if we are in the damning business like Justin is).

As to Muslims, that is for another thread. But one thing our resident Jews can tell you - assuming they study history - is that Muslims have treated Jews with vastly more kindness and acceptance than Christians have throughout the ages.

Hey, we are all hypocrites, no doubt. But those who write on blogs like this attempting to cast the speck out of their brothers eyes - while not seeing the logs in their own eyes - that takes the cake, IMHO.

Posted by: Stuart at March 14, 2010 5:06 PM


I got your point. To your credit, abortion for sex-selection isn't something you are actually willing to defend. But, as Justin says in the main post, the idea that there should be no criticism of the broadest possible abortion regime possible has become so deeply ingrained into American liberalism, the idea that there should be any limit on the practice of abortion seems to make you uncomfortable. So you want to shoot the messenger and change the subject, instead of considering the source of the conflict.

It wouldn't hurt for you to build on that first impulse -- an impulse firmly rooted in the Enlightenment -- and see where it takes you.

Posted by: Andrew at March 14, 2010 6:45 PM

Stuart might like being a "dhimmi"in a Muslim society-nothing is stopping him.
I for one don't much care to be "tolerated" in some Islamic nation.I'm sure Stuart can get a visa to emigrate to some happy land like Mauritania.
Contemporary Muslim societies aren't the Ottoman Empire.I'm sure jews wouldn't feel welcome in those places whether or not they were Zionists.
Stuart has raw anti-Christian bigotry pouring from every orifice,but he doesn't get "called out"(the new trendy leftist term) for it.

Posted by: joe bernstein at March 14, 2010 7:32 PM

Believe me, joe - you would rather be tolerated than placed upon the rack or killed in a pogrom! It beats being gassed or starved also.

Once again, the point is missed. Certain things, especially sex and reproductive freedom, are private matters and out of the realm of government - period.

Or at least they should be. But some people can't help but try to be in everyone else's business.

C''mon, let's dissect Justins posts. He is using the extreme chinese example to suggest that anytime you jerk off and don't make each sperm count, you just "might" be heading down the slippery (in more ways than one) slope of immorality.

Of course I would not defend sex selection. At the same time, I would defend government or social policies which would make people think hard before breeding. Since the right so dislikes welfare and such things, I would think they would agree with me!

The sad fact is that in our culture and in many others, the women ends up doing much of the heavy lifting in terms of actual hours of child raising. Having raised a number of children, I would not wish such upon anyone who was not capable, willing and financially able.

What part of keeping government out of a womans womb or mans testicles can't Justin and other conservatives understand? They crow about small government and how we each have free will and the capability to make our own decisions, and then they support forcing people into poverty and children into unloving families.

I don't get it.

As usual, it is simple thinking. Of course I and everyone else is against abortion! I am against car accidents and hurricanes too. I am also against cancer and hearth disease and diabetes, and suggest (like sex) that we all take as many precautions as possible to avoid any unwanted accidents or diseases.

The real difference is that one "side" simply wants people to practice what they preach and each make their own decisions, and the other "side" wants to tell everyone exactly what to do (or, in this case, what not to do!)

And lest you think this just applies to abortion, keep in mind that the Catholic Church throughout history condemned contraception as sinful. Sure, they recently have hemmed and hawed on this, as they would have a mass exodus if they were not allowed to enjoy life like the rest of us!

It's funny how God changes his mind when membership is at stake!

Posted by: Stuart at March 14, 2010 9:59 PM

Am I the only one beginning to suspect that Stuart is an Organizing for America acolyte, trolling this conservative-leaning blog instead of calling in to talk radio? (OFA has commenced an organized effort to hijack the call-in portion of that medium.)

In any case, whatever his motives, he's beginning to sound like a creature of modern American academia -- either as a recent graduate who's keg-partied the statist Kool-Aid dispensed on modern campuses, or currently teaching (or otherwise employed in same).

In any case, he needs a dose of reality (IMHO). A good start would be for him to read Gulag Archipelago and Liberal Fascism.

Posted by: Ragin' Rhode Islander at March 14, 2010 10:37 PM

Contraception is safe enough nowadays-it should be the answer rather than abortion.
What Justin describes is not even abortion-it's murder by almost(I'll explain)anyone's definition.
Peter Singer,Princeton professor of "bioethics" and a member Of Obama's health advisory panel doesn't believe infants are human for at least two weeks after birth and can be disposed of if they are "defective".Oh,but he is a rabid animal rights supporter.
The sickening irony is that his parents fled Austria to avoid the Holocaust.And they raised a demonic creature like him.
The real shame is that Princeton gives this turd an endowed "chair".I think the Ivy League is way overrated.

Posted by: joe bernstein at March 15, 2010 7:37 AM

To Joe's points above with regard to Singer:

And some quotes from the article:

"There was a letter in a recent Princeton Alumni Weekly that again quoted this line about "defective infants." It's the emphasis on defective that I find really unfair because the letter writer is quoting from a book published in 1979. If the writer bothered to look at the 1993 edition of Practical Ethics, he would find the langauge has changed to "disabled." It's a little like accusing someone of having a negative attitude to African-Americans because they used "Negro," quoting a speech from the 1950s. Martin Luther King, Jr., used that word. The fashions change in terms of the language you use."

"How did you become interested in issues about disabled infants?

When I learned that it was common practice for doctors to take infants with serious disabilities and deal with them by withholding life-prolonging treatment but not doing anything to actually hasten their deaths. "

"Another important point is that people sometimes say that I have more compassion for animals than I do for humans. I have an essentially unified position: I am opposed to unnecessary suffering whether it's a human or an animal. A lot of the suffering we inflict on nonhuman animals is unnecessary and in some cases pointless. And I want to put a stop to that. The same is true in regard to human beings."

Posted by: Patrick at March 15, 2010 10:03 AM
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