A Shocking 'One-Child' Statistic in CNN Story From China Earthquake

You have to wonder how this CNN headline and story about the earthquake in China got out, as it includes a shocking statistic (400 million births "prevented") rarely seen in the West (bold is mine):

Parents' losses compounded by China's one-child policy

Li Yunxia wipes away tears as rescue crews dig through the ruins of a kindergarten class that has buried her only child -- a 5-year-old boy.

Other parents wail as soldiers in blue masks trudge through the mud, hauling bodies from the rubble on stretchers.

"Children were screaming, but I couldn't hear my son's voice," she says, sobbing.

This grim ritual repeated itself Thursday across southwestern China, as thousands of mothers and fathers await news about their sons and daughters.

..... The grief is compounded in many cases by a Chinese policy that limits most couples to one child, a measure meant to control explosive population growth.

As a result of the one-child policy, the quake -- already responsible for at least 15,000 deaths -- is producing another tragic aftershock:

Not only must thousands of parents suddenly cope with the loss of a child, but many must cope with the loss of their only child.

China's population minister recently praised the one-child rule, which dates to 1979, saying it has prevented 400 million children from being born.

..... That reality has cast parents like Li into an agonizing limbo -- waiting to discover whether their only child is alive or dead.

Joe Stalin, himself responsible for the deaths of countless millions (literally true; the total has been best-guesstimated at between 20 million and 30 million), once said that "One death is a tragedy; a million is a statistic." What does that make 400 million? It would appear that at least 300 million of those "prevented" children were victims of abortion; this Abortion Facts link reports that over 10 million abortions took place in China in just one of the 29 years since the one-child policy took effect.

Though I suppose the point might be made, I'm not going to try to argue that losing "only" one child of several would make parents' grief more manageable. I just find it very interesting, given the relative pass the US media has given Communist China during its government-imposed 29-year "one-child" horror, that this story took the angle that it did -- and that it got past its editors.

It will be very interesting to see how long this Kyung Lah's CNN dispatch remains available. Saving it to the hard drive might be advisable.

Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.

Tom Blumer
Tom Blumer
Tom Blumer is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.