Parents may no longer need to wait 20 weeks for the ultrasound or amniocentesis to find out the gender of their unborn child. According to recent news, tests for detecting a child’s gender at seven weeks are available in the U.S. and other parts of the world. While such a test can only be purchased through private companies in the U.S., it can be found over the counter in a handful of other nations. Because of sex-selective abortions, however, such tests in India and China are banned.
But, with easier availability of such a test, could the U.S. and other developed nations fall into the same pattern as India and China? An editorial on Babble implies that, because of the growing number of American men and their preference for male offspring, this could happen, and, in many years down the line, the U.S. may face the same gender imbalance that China and India are currently experiencing.
According to a Gallup poll, American men between the ages of 18 and 29 years would prefer to have a boy over a girl by a 40- to 28-percent margin. However, women’s opinions, even from a potentially-shrinking population, are not taken into account. Additionally, while minimal data for sex-selective abortions in the U.S. is available, the insistence of having a male child is not as pervasive in the U.S., and restrictions, such as China’s one-child policy, are nonexistent.
At the same time, such tests are not solely for determine a fetus’ gender but, instead, are used for finding if the child is carrying any sex-linked genetic diseases, such as hemophilia in males.
Do you think that favoritism, while not influenced by population restrictions or tradition, when combined with early sex detection tests could result in a growing number of sex-selective abortions in the U.S.?