Prominent Chinese Scholars Issue Open Letter Calling For Rethink Of Country's Family Planning Laws

“A group of 15 prominent Chinese scholars issued an open letter on Thursday calling for a rethink of [the] country’s family planning laws, arguing that the law in its present form is incompatible with China’s increasing respect for human rights and need for sustainable economic development,” according to the Wall Street Journal’s “China Real Time Report.” “‘The birth approval system built on the idea of controlling population size as emphasized in the current ‘Population and Family Planning Law’ does not accord with provisions on the protection of human rights contained in the nation’s constitution,’ the authors of Thursday’s letter wrote, adding that a rewriting of the law was ‘imperative,'” the blog adds.

“The list of signatories included several high-profile figures, including Beijing University sociologist Li Jianxin and well-known Internet entrepreneur-cum-economist James Liang,” the blog writes, noting, “It was the second open call for reform of the one-child policy this week, and comes less than a month after the shocking story of a seven-months pregnant woman forced to undergo an abortion ignited a firestorm of anger online.” The blog continues, “Researchers with the Research Development Center, a prominent government-affiliated think tank, added their voices to the chorus on Tuesday with an open call for Beijing to consider revising the policy.” That essay highlights “China’s rapidly aging population and a predicted dearth of young workers that some have said could bring about a demographic crisis” (Chin, 7/5).