women and the one-child policy

China’s One-Child Policy: Bad for Women

15 February 2022

1.5 MINS

The myopic one-child policy of the Chinese Communist Party has created demographic and societal chaos. Women are particularly affected, for generations.

In this episode of the Ruth Institute Podcast, we tune in to Sacred Heart Radio’s show, Driving Home the Faith with Fr Rob Jack. Dr Jennifer Roback Morse discusses China’s one-child policy and the bleak demographic winter that looms in the future.

Dr Morse relates that perhaps it is absolute power wielded by a few which has corrupted the government of China.

“They get off on bossing people around and we have to account for that in the human condition, that some governmental policies are driven by corrupt persons who want to exercise their might.” [paraphrase]

The age-old maxim comes to mind: absolute power corrupts absolutely.

Divided Nation

Dr Morse adds that China fell for the overpopulation myth, hook, line, and sinker, with its own citizens turning on each other and reporting on non-conforming neighbours.

China assembled somewhere around one million persons into the birth-control police, conveniently named “Family Planning Police”. This was the largest, non-military police force in the world at the time. [1980s]

Dashed Hopes, Lack of Protest

Many economists and businesses thought that opening trade with China would make them want to be free like us. Capitalism was the great hope for them. But instead of liberalising because we dealt with them, they stole all our technology.

Dr Morse emphatically stated:

The government has no right issuing birth limits on the citizen.”

She comments that very few Western, non-religious, NGOs (non-governmental organisations) said anything against the one-child policy when it was implemented. It seemed only religious people, mostly Catholic, would acknowledge that it is intrinsically wrong for the government to decide family sizes.


Now China is encouraging women to have children. They are beginning to see what looks to be a devastating future.

The future looks especially bleak for the women of China, who are outnumbered significantly by their male counterparts. This is because the overwhelming demand under the policy was for sons.

“[China’s One Child Policy] increased the demand for women; it did not in fact increase the well being of women — it increased the well-being of men who control the women.”
– Dr Jennifer Roback Morse


Originally published at The Ruth Institute. Photo by Kindel Media from Pexels.

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