A tragic example of male dominance was reported on the front page of USA Today: International Edition (Sept. 6, 1994): "No girls allowed: abortion for sex selection raises moral questions" was the caption on a photo of a doctor performing an ultrasound on a pregnant woman in India. The cover story, "Asains' Desire for Boys Leaves a Deadly Choice," reported that according to Dr. Datta Pai, a Bombay obstetrician, "99% of those found to be carrying female fetuses aborted their unborn children." (2A). The story explained that "modern technology, the strong cultural desire for boys and pressure to reduce population have joined forces in a deadly combination in India, China and much of Asia to produce a booming business in sex selection...the practice of aborting female fetuses appears common judging by the emerging statistics that show lopsided sex ratios throughout Asia and into North Africa. Nor is the practice of sex selection limited to abortion. Female infanticide, the abandonment of baby girls, and the preferential health care and feeding of boys contribute greatly to the imbalanced ratios" (1A-2A). The story goes on to quote Harvard professor Amartya Sen as saying that there are now more than 100,000,000 women "missing" in the population of the world, including 44,000,000 fewer women in China and 37,000,000 fewer in India than should be alive according to normal sex ratios at birth (2A).
This is a tragedy of unspeakable proportions. In addition to the harm of these lost lives, we must think of the destructive consequences in the lives of those women who survive. From their earliest age they receive the message from their families and indeed from their whole society, "Boys are better than girls," and "I wish you were a boy." The devastation on their own sense of self-worth must be immense. Yet all of this comes as a result of a failure to realize that men and women, boys and girls have equal value in God's sight and should have equal value in our sight as well. The first chapter of the Bible corrects this practice and corrects any lurking sense in our own hearts that boys are more valuable than girls, when it says we are both created in the image of God.
Wayne Grudem, Biblical Foundations for Manhood and Womanhood (Wheaton, Il: Crossway Books, 2002), 20-21
100 million women missing from the world. That was almost 20 years ago. God help us.