Nowadays, most people have accepted many new ideas, such as couples living together before marriage, men staying home as home-husbands and divorce. However, in developing countries, a significant proportion of the population are still holding a very serious preference for male offspring and yearning to have a male baby, despite the fact that females can take care of their parents physically and psychologically far better than their male peers. It is worth looking into the reason for and some negative ongoing consequences of this male preference.
The explanation can be traced to the traditional male-centered culture. Since the primitive era, women have become the belongings of their husbands, and their major job was producing a male heir for their husband. This is because only males can preserve the family name and the inheritance. In addition, as Tina Rosenberg described in her article “The Daughter Deficit”, a son is a financial necessary for parents.
Only sons take responsibility to look after their aged parents, and daughters have limited contact with their parents soon after they become someone’s wife.
If a couple couldn’t produce a son, they would think they are the most miserable couple in the world and would suffer long-term loneliness in their old age. Moreover, some countries hold a very strange superstition, that if a woman gives birth to more than 3 daughters, her husband will die. It is hardly surprising that the strong determination to have baby boys can lead to catastrophic consequences. After a long history of son preference stemming from the old culture, some countries are now facing very serious gender imbalance. This results from the extreme measures which have been used to get rid of an unwanted baby girl, for some people decide to go to any lengths to get the type of baby they want. The first of them is sex-selective abortion.
Now, high technology like ultrasound scanning makes it very easy and convenient to achieve that goal. Its popularity and prevalence has caused numerous fetuses to die before they can see their Mom’s face. The second action is infanticide. Some infants have chance enjoy the sunshine and mom’s smile for a little while before their parents arrange their death just because they are not male descendants who can carry their family name and bring honor to their family as their parents think. Although some girls are lucky enough to stay with their dear mommy for several years, at last their mothers have to abandon them due to the family or society pressure. Even worse, some girls are neglected to death. These facts are heartbreaking, these parents are unforgivable and the consequences are very serious. According o the observation of Tina Rosenberg in her article, “The Daughter Deficit”, in India and China, more than 1.5 million fewer girls were born each year than it is predicated.
Also, according to census data released by the National Bureau of Statistics of China, the gender ratio was 117.7 newborn boys for every 100 girls in 2012 in China. This means that millions women are missing and there would be a dramatic excess of men. However, the impact of male preference goes beyond the immediate consequence of the disordered ratio of males to females, and it brings about more complicated implications in the long term. This unbalanced population can lead to a series of social problems. The serious gender imbalance has produced a large number of extra young men. Obviously, when they reach adulthood, some of them would find it extremely difficult to get married. With the poor prospect of getting a wife, some young men would resort to alcohol and drugs as comfort, while some of the others might take risks or get into fights in order to improve their prospects.
Even more, some desperate young men are likely to blame their whole predicament on the society and government. As a result, they would pursue revenge on society, and cause a lot of trouble for innocent people. Eventually, everyone, including people who criticize the unfair treatment towards girls, will suffer from the serious consequences of an unstable society. In conclusion, the essential reason for the bias in favor of male offspring is the traditional man-centered culture, and it causes a series of negative effects. If society doesn’t take it very serious and make some changes, it can be foreseen that our brilliant culture would collapse due to this unfair preference.