Infanticide of Females in India

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Topics: Gender, Infant, Female, Male, Woman, Sex
Every day a baby is killed because it isn 't the gender the parents preferred. In third world countries such as India infanticide of females is common. There have been laws outlawing both infanticide and determining the sex of babies if it is not medically necessary, however it still continues. The killing of female babies has led to many ethical and social issues. Infanticide has also lead to an imbalance in the ratio of men to woman in India. For every 100 males born there are 105 females born however, most females are killed within 3 days after their birth making the new ratio 93 females for every 100 males.(Girish p1) Even though laws and programs have been established to decrease the number of female infanticide it still continues. In India in 1994 determining the sex of fetuses was outlawed if it wasn 't deemed medically necessary. (Jones p2) However, ultrasounds are still used to determine the sex of a baby illegally. Couples and doctors alike make excuses and come up with cover stories to justify an ultrasound. Some think that outlawing ultrasounds altogether would decrease the number female infanticide because it would make it more difficult to get an ultrasound. Even though ultrasounds are used to save lives of babies in India they are more known to kill babies. "Ultrasounds are used to save 1 out of 20,000 babies and kill 20 out of every 100 because it reveals the baby is the wrong gender."(Girish p2) However ultrasounds are not the only way a couple can find out the sex of their baby prenatally. At home tests that tell parents the gender of their baby are sold online from a site that is based in the United States. The tests cost $25 and can detect the sex of a fetus as early as five weeks into a pregnancy. The mother supplies 3 drops of blood pricked from her finger on a test strip and mails the test plus $250 dollars for processing. Two days later the parents can log on to the site where the results of the test are announced and find out the sex


Cited: Carmichael, Mary. "No Girls, Please." Newsweek 26 Jan. 2004,Vol. 143 Issue 4, p50-50, 2/3p, 1c. Girish, Uma. "For India 's daughters, a dark birth day." Csmonitor.com. 9 Feb. 2005. Jones, Adam. "Case Study: Female Infanticide." www.gendercide.org Snider, Michael."Fears of Sex Selection." Macleans 3 Oct. 2005,VOl. 118 Issue 40, p60-60, 1p, Van Balen, Frank. "The choice for sons of daughters." Editorial University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

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