A California Catholic Daily Exclusive:
At the October 19 presidential debate, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton said “I’ve been to countries where governments… forced women to have abortions, like they used to do in China.”
Clinton was apparently unaware that China’s policy of forced abortion is far from being a thing of the past.
Ms. Reggie Littlejohn, President of Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, and a scheduled speaker at San Francisco’s 2017 Walk for Life West Coast, was quick to set the record straight. On October 20, Littlejohn posted on the Women’s Rights Without Frontiers blog:
“With all her experience as former Secretary of State, it is untrue and deeply disappointing for Hillary Clinton to put the Chinese government’s practice of forced abortion in the past. If she thinks that China no longer forces women to abort babies, she should explain that to a couple, surnamed Zhong, who in August of this year were forced to choose between an abortion at eight months or the loss of both of their government jobs. Or she should inform He Liping, who was forced either to pay an impossible “terror fine” of $39,000 or face abortion at six months.”
Ms. Littlejohn is a graduate of Yale Law School, and has practiced law in San Francisco. She has also worked with Saint Mother Teresa in Calcutta. In 2008 she founded Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, which has been called “the leading voice to expose and oppose forced abortion, gendercide, and sexual slavery in China.” She has testified six times at the United States Congress, twice at the European Parliament, and at the British and Irish Parliaments as well. She has also briefed officials at the White House, the United States Department of State and the Vatican. She is a frequent guest on radio and television programs, including CNN, C-SPAN and the BBC, and has issued several groundbreaking reports that are included in the Congressional Record.
She continued to school the former Secretary of State Clinton on China’s policy, of which Clinton was either ignorant or had chosen to misstate:
“Or perhaps she should read the May 4, 2016, BBC article entitled ‘Reinventing China’s Abortion Police,’ which discusses a small collaborative project by Stanford University and Shaanxi Normal University to repurpose 69 Family Planning Officials — apparently on the assumption that they are no longer needed now that China has moved to a two-child policy.”
Littlejohn then quoted from the BBC article, which described how China’s ‘two-child policy’ is enforced: “Since the start of 2016, all Chinese couples have been allowed two children. But they can have no more than that unless they are from ethnic minorities – so (abortion policy enforcer) Li Bo still spends some of his time working as a birth-control enforcer. In the town’s health clinic he is busy screening local women. All women of childbearing age have check-ups four times a year to ensure they’re healthy… and to see if they are pregnant… But Li is also a loyal Communist party official who believes the state knows best and society’s needs are greater than those of individuals. So he is matter-of-fact about the unpleasant task of telling women who couldn’t afford the fine to terminate their pregnancies. ‘People didn’t swear at us but they probably did behind our backs,’ he says. ‘It’s natural because we were carrying out the law and they were breaking it so it is just like the clash between a policeman and a thief.’ He adds that as long as restrictions are in place, such clashes will continue.”
Ms. Littlejohn unpacked the policies indicated in the BBC article and noted that a close reading of the above paragraph reveals four things: 1) that coercive pregnancy screening continues; 2) That forced abortion continues; 3) That women pregnant without permission of the Chinese Communist Party are considered criminals; and 4) That the policy of forced abortion continues to cause unrest among the Chinese people.
Littlejohn concluded: “The Chinese Communist Party has not agreed to get out of the bedrooms of the Chinese people, and Presidential candidates should not be stating or implying that they have. We need to keep the international pressure on the Chinese Communist Party until all coercive population control is eradicated.”
On January 21, 2017, Ms. Littlejohn will be one of the keynote speakers at the 13th Annual Walk for Life West Coast in San Francisco.