In my book, whose title escapes me, I mention China’s gender imbalance (the unintended consequence of the government’s “one child policy). I’m glad to see it’s getting more attention:
The proportion of male births to female births (the “sex ratio”) is not merely unusual, but alarming. Worldwide, there are already 100 million girls “missing” due to sex-selective abortion and female infanticide, according to the English medical journal The Lancet. Fifty million of these girls are thought to be from China. In many provinces, the sex ratio at birth is between 120 to 130 boys for every 100 girls; the natural number is about 104. What will happen in future decades when these boys grow up and look for wives?
One hundred million guys who can’t get any action is not a recipe for social stability, unless China’s planning on turning Shanghai into Provincetown East:
Another serious threat is to regional stability and, by extension, international security. As Valerie Hudson and Andrea den Boer recently wrote in their prize-winning work on demography and security, “Bare Branches,” surplus male populations in a region often result in violence – through banditry, rioting, or militarization. The 6 to 5 male-female ratio in China means there are a lot of men who will not be able to start families. If history is any guide, they will either find less savory things to occupy their time, or find women through equally unsavory means.