Another thriving industry in China: baby girls

Posted by Martyn

Visitors to one of Guangzhou’s oldest 5-star hotels, The White Swan, on Shamian Island, where the old British trade concession used to be located and the current location of the US Embassy and the office of the China Centre for Adoption Affairs (CCAA) are able to witness another thriving Chinese industry. Dozens of Caucasian, mainly American, couples coo over and gurgle at their latest Made in China items, a snip at around US$7,000: Chinese baby girls.

China is now the country of choice for thousands of affluent couples worldwide seeking to adopt a child. As in so many other things, China has bucked the world trend. Legal changes and moratoriums were recently applied in Russia, Romania recently banned international adoptions in January this year, Ukraine stopped new applications in June; South Korea, Guatemala, Cambodia and Thailand have all tightened existing legislation on adoptions. However, although China has applied some selective restrictions, the CCAA scrapped quotas (except for single parents) in 2003. The percentage of single parents adopting in China was arbitrarily reduced from 40% down to 8% of the total.

Prior to 1994 there were only a negligible amount of international adoptions out of China. The U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) recorded 787 children adopted from China in 1994; this number climbed to 4,263 in 1998 and now stands at 7,044 in 2004. A total of over 50,000 babies have gone to the US since 1992. Another interesting statistic: 95% are girls.

The Chinese government, which began its controversial One-Child Policy in 1979, is relatively open as to why so many female babies are abandoned and end up in orphanages. The typical profile of an abandoned child is a healthy newborn girl who has one or more older sisters but no brothers:

The Chinese government enforces the one-child policy through heavy fines, pressure from employers and communist officials, and other means. Human rights activists have documented forced abortions and sterilizations, even infanticide. And in combination with ingrained cultural preferences for male children in China, the one-child policy has created a wave of abandoned girls in orphanages, as families get rid of “illegal” girls so that they can fill their one-child quota with a son.

Between 1 and 3 million Chinese children, mostly girls and disabled boys, fill over 40,000 orphanages. Conditions have improved considerably since 1996 when Dr. Zhung, a Chinese paediatrician living in exile, helped Amn3sty 1nternational compile a report ‘Death by Default’ which in turn inspired the secretly filmed UK documentary ‘Dying Rooms’ that showed evidence of appalling conditions and neglect together with a shockingly high mortality rate in China’s orphanages. These allegations were also strongly refuted by the Chinese government at the time.

It’s clear that the One-Child Policy lies at the heart of the problem of abandonment, gender-based abortions and even female infanticide. Critics accuse the government of profiting out of this policy (the adoption process includes a fixed “donation” of around US$3000-$4000 to the Children’s Welfare Institute). Time Asia, this week, also provides an in-depth report on the practice of forced sterilization, closely connected to the One-Child Policy.

Despite the consequences of the One-Child Policy, if over 7,000 children per year can receive another chance to have a real family then that should be welcomed. In addition, I’m sure the life chances of the children improve considerably in their new adoptive countries compared to growing up in an orphanage. If 7,000 loving potential parents can be matched with 7,000 children who needs homes and families, then that is a real “win-win” situation as far as I’m concerned.

The Discussion: 45 Comments

One thing I’d really like to hear from the Chinese commenters here is their views on adoption.

Anytime I’ve brought it up with friends, they usually talk about how nice the white people are to adopt these babies, and how it’s shameful for China not to be able to care for them.

But what really creeped me out is when I figured out that their views on adoption were quite opposite to my own. They spoke as if adopting = paying for someone’s food/shelter/school. They’re not really family, you just take care of them.

I’ve heard this is common except in the US, but it still freaks me out.

September 12, 2005 @ 11:25 pm | Comment

It’s funny you should say that Sean because I noticed a paragraph on one of the US Embassy sites saying something along the lines of ‘adoption is a very sensitive subject in China. Adopting couples should be discreet and act with decorum at all times’.

I’ve noticed that the mainland guests and diners in the White Swan Hotel usually bore holes in the families staring at them.

Otherwise, I don’t think I’ve ever broached the subject of adoption here in China before.

September 12, 2005 @ 11:37 pm | Comment

My next-door neighbour recently adopted a 2-year old girl from Anhui. They are among an increasing number of Australians who have chosen to adopt baby girls from China after witnessing the miserable treatments that some of these abandoned babies are receiving in the orphanages. What annoys me most about the One Child Policy is that women (and little baby girls) are made to endure pain and suffering all in the name of national interest. Why is it that it is always the female half of the population in China that has to carry for the entire nation the burden of these draconian policies?

September 12, 2005 @ 11:42 pm | Comment

Women always seem to have to pay for men’s inanities, bearing an appalingly unfair balance of the misery. I don’t know what the solution is, and fear it’s only going to worsen, at least in America where to champion the rights of women leads to charges of being a “Feminazi.” Iraq’s another place where I wouldn’t want to be a woman.

On a more positive note, I know three people in my last company alone who are adopting Chinese baby girls. I think it’s really wonderful.

September 12, 2005 @ 11:47 pm | Comment

I’ve never thought about it in that way before Fat Cat…..but you’re right. Whether one agrees with it or not, I wonder how long the One-Child Policy would have lasted if the suffering bit was the other way around?

If I remember correctly, the govt here voted to keep the OCP just a couple of years ago.

Anyway, great observation.

September 12, 2005 @ 11:51 pm | Comment

One thing the comment does not point out is that in the American contingent of adopting parents, a small number, but some people are willing to and do adopt children with certain handicaps and deformities.

I tend to disagree with Martyn’s statement that the One Child Policy of China is the root of the mal-treatment of baby girls. I think it is more rooted in the ancient
agrarian custom of male perferance.

September 12, 2005 @ 11:55 pm | Comment

You’re absolutely right pete, in fact, it’s probably more accurate to say that the situation is a mixture of the two (i.e. the One-Child Policy and the old cultural preference for boys).

By the way, if anyone would like to read the Chinese govt’s officals rebuttal of the allegations in the TV documentary “Dying Rooms’ (which caused a huge outcry in Britain as I remember) you can find it here:

The Description and Accusations About
China’s Children’s Welfare Institutions by
Britain’s Channel Four and the Human Rights
Watch/Asia Do Not Hold Water

September 13, 2005 @ 12:00 am | Comment

pete, re disabled children being adopted, I read that a lot of couples are intitally offered a disabled child first, especially if the parets are doctors/nurses etc. Unfortunately the vast majority of adopted babies are healthy girls under 11 months old.

I also read that cleft lips and cleft pallets are extremely common in China, surprisingly so in fact. A Google search will uncover many, many charities providing the simple operations in China.

Another cultural quirk in China: fear/dislike (not sure of the right word) of disabilities/abnormalities. This is the No 2 reason after “female gender” why babies are abandoned.

September 13, 2005 @ 12:06 am | Comment

I don’t know whether I’m in the best position to comment on Sean’s question about the Chinese perspectives of adoption. But I’ll try my best.
It is quite common among Chinese communities to assist one’s relatives or even next-door neighbours in raising their children, particularly if they are single parents. Most of the time, this kind of assistance is offered informally. But in some occasions, particularly if the adopted parents can’t have children of their own, the relationship will be formalised through adoption. The adopted child will receive financial assistance from the adopted parents but will live at home as long as his/her biological parents are still alive. The adopted child, however, will have an obligation to look after the adopted parents when they become old. To go into foster care (i.e. living with the adopted parents as a family) is an indication that the child is either an orphan or he/her family can’t afford to keep them.

September 13, 2005 @ 12:17 am | Comment

Pete and Martyn are correct to point out that most people prefer to adopt healthy children. But my friends told me that conditions for adopting disabled children are rather strict in terms of the level of care that they can provide. That also explains why most people don’t prefer to adopt disabled children.

September 13, 2005 @ 12:32 am | Comment

The adopted child will receive financial assistance from the adopted parents but will live at home as long as his/her biological parents are still alive.

Wow, thanks Fat Cat. I’d never heard of that. It makes a lot more sense now. If this type of thing has been in the culture for a while, it’s no wonder the insider/outsider paradigm has stuck.

Can anyone here fathom a guess as to when the stigma of adoption went away in the US/UK? How did we transition from the Dickins-style adopted child as slave to the more modern adopted child as family? How will China make that transition?

September 13, 2005 @ 1:07 am | Comment

Fat Cat asks: “Why is it that it is always the female half of the population in China that has to carry for the entire nation the burden of these draconian policies?”

Agrarian tradition and Confucianism, I’d say, in part. But I have to agree with Richard here. Women – and children – tend to pay the price for societal ills. It’s one of those things that’s “not cool” to discuss, cause it might get you labeled a “feminazi”. But if you look at what populations are in poverty in American, for instance, it’s elderly women who make up a large percentage of the poor. Not older couples. Just older women on their own.

I’ve thought about adopting. I don’t know whether I would want to adopt a kid from my own country – we have plenty – or a Chinese baby girl. It’s hard for me to know what the more moral choice might be.

September 13, 2005 @ 1:09 am | Comment

Even if a female chinese baby is allowed to grow up with its natural parents, after not being aborted after an (illegal) ultrasound scan, being killed immediately after being born or being abandoned at birth, girls are often denied schooling either because the family can only afford to send boys to school or the familiy just don’t think its worth educating a girl.

Also, at 16, in many cases, a girl is either married off or told that the family cannot afford to keep them any longer. I have lost count of the migrant worker girls I have met in Shanghai over the years who tell me are 16, 17, 18 etc years old and along in the big city because they could no longer live with their parents.

September 13, 2005 @ 3:55 am | Comment

…”alone” in the big city, not along.

September 13, 2005 @ 3:56 am | Comment

My wife and I are contemplating the possibility of adoption for various reasons. If I’m living here I would certainly consider adopting a Chinese baby. Why not? And yet, the idea of turning the process into something boutique like – healthy baby girls only $7000 – is kind of repellent. It’s not the amount. It’s the idea of somehow commoditizing children. Still, as the free marketers say, if it matches supply and demand…

September 13, 2005 @ 4:10 am | Comment

Hi Will, from what I read when researching this post, US couples largely (surpisingly) have the opposite impression of the CCAA’s process of matching a child with a couple.

For the reasons included in your above comment, I’d be happy to go and find the sites I’m thinking about for you.

All adoptions are handled exclusively by the govt CCAA, prospective parents must satisfy both the CCAA and the US INS (the latter being the more stringent). Couples are requested to choose ideal, age, area in China of their daughter to be and the CCAA staff try and match the requirements with the children currently available. Requests are almost always granted. The CCAA even try and match the babies with parents who resemble them!

The parents also go to a ‘Matching Room’ and are allowed to see the current database of abandoned children. Visits to the orphanages are then arranged for couples to meet their prospective daughter.

Once all parties are happy, paperwork is given to the CCAA to arrange a passport and the INS to arrange US citizenship. As long as both parents fly to China and fly back to the US with the child, the child is automatically is granted US citizenship. The Chinese passport is thereafter not needed as China does not allow joint citizenship.

I’m sure that if you both decided to go ahead with something like this, it would be a decision that neither of you would ever regret. That’s my personal opinion anyway. For an abandoned child to be given the chance of having loving parents and a real home is not something someone can attach any kind of moral price to I think.

There are also many, many websites )I read some of them) re-counting the experiences of cuoples who have gone through the process and providing support to prospective parents. Good luck mate.

September 13, 2005 @ 4:34 am | Comment

Sean, I think there are a lot of nonsense in your observation. You meaned to tell me that Chinese will adopt a child and let the child call them mom/dad withouth thinking the child as part of the family? Raising a child from a baby to adulthood is a major major task. And saying that the adopted family is nothing more than a place to provide room and board is very laughable in my opinion.

September 13, 2005 @ 8:09 am | Comment

Martyn, you obviously feel strongly about this issue, and having also seen The Dying Rooms (in 1995) I can understand why. However, can I ask if you have already, or are contemplating adopting a child?

September 13, 2005 @ 8:39 am | Comment

Isn’t sean asking a genuine question wawa?

We are seeing the fallout or the nasty side of the one child policy here. The feudal and old fashioned culture of wanting a boy baby more than a girl still abounds in China. The one child policy just magnifies it that is all.

In this regard, China is still many years behind the rest of the world.

Moreover, as far as recent politics goes, the move away from the iron rice bowl has plunged China back into the dark ages as the parents all worry about who will take care of them when they get old. The fact is that boys have a greater chance of earning more money than girls.

September 13, 2005 @ 8:57 am | Comment

I remember the Dying Rooms as well. I sure hope China orphanges have changed since then.

September 13, 2005 @ 9:01 am | Comment

Luke, what did I say wrong in my answer to sean’s genuine question?

September 13, 2005 @ 9:07 am | Comment

wawa, cut the crap. You started out, both fists swinging as usual, saying Sean’s comment is filled with “nonsense.” Luke is saying Sean’s questions are valid and explains why the one-child policy is, to him, a throwback to an earlier and less enlightened time.

September 13, 2005 @ 9:15 am | Comment

Fat Cat wrote:

Why is it that it is always the female half of the population in China that has to carry for the entire nation the burden of these draconian policies?

Not always, not in this case.

You forgot another result of the One Child Policy: the growing number of “guanggun” (“bare sticks”), men who are doomed to a life of bachelorhood. There may soon be tens of millions of them. Only Chinese men will pay this price. And it’s not just that they won’t be able to marry, they also won’t be able to have children. For a man in a Confucian society, that’s not a desirable fate.

At the same time that many men, probably the very poorest men, are locked out of marriage, Chinese women should be experiencing a significant improvement in mate quality as they choose from a larger pool. Also, women now considered for some reason to be undesirable should face much brighter marriage prospects.

So at least in this respect the One Child Policy will actually benefit women at the price of men.

I have also heard that because of the One Child Policy some men have been forced or co-erced into sterilization, but I really have no idea how widespread this is.

I’m not saying these in any way balance out the many hardships facing Chinese women. I just want to point out that it’s not only women paying the price, many Chinese men also suffer.

September 13, 2005 @ 9:19 am | Comment

Richard, I think you are the one that need to cut the crap. Sean’s question was about adoption not about one child policy.

September 13, 2005 @ 9:33 am | Comment

Okay,since you want to dwell on the trivial and not the actual subjuect at hand, then I revise my comment to read: wawa, cut the crap. You started out, both fists swinging as usual, saying Sean’s comment is filled with “nonsense.” Luke is saying Sean’s questions are valid and explains why the adoption policy is, to him, a throwback to an earlier and less enlightened time.

September 13, 2005 @ 9:46 am | Comment

This is off topic but I think people could see who is throwing the fist here.

So if I think Sean’s observation is nonsense, I shouldn’t use the word “nonsense” or I’ll be throwing the fist?

That is really a nonsense by itself. Congradulations.

September 13, 2005 @ 9:56 am | Comment

Are you having fun, wawa?

September 13, 2005 @ 9:57 am | Comment

Sean and Wawa are at slight cross-purposes here. Let me explain:

Sean is talking, generally, about an attitude he perceives here in China towards adoption. That is, the old-fashioned, Confucian values of the family line/family name being continued, raising many strong sons etc. This is not unique to China incidentally.

Wawa is stating, quite rightly, that if a Chinese family adopted a child then the child would obviously be raised with the same love and devotion as a biological son/daughter.


At I said, Sean’s “I don’t want to bring up another man’s child” attitude exists in the west as well. I know, I’ve heard it said many times.

However, it goes without saying that a childless Chinese couple and a childless western couple would treat an adopted child exactly the same.

September 13, 2005 @ 10:29 am | Comment


That’s your best comment since the one about gay themes in traditional Chinese literature. Great stuff.

The consequences of the male-dominated gender imbalance in Chinese society. From what I’ve read, it’s not only the wife-less men who will suffer but also society as a whole.

September 13, 2005 @ 10:34 am | Comment


Sorry to have mislead you but I’ve got to answer “no” to both questions (about feeling strongly about this issue and wanting to adopt myself). Neither apply I’m afraid.

September 13, 2005 @ 10:36 am | Comment


I’m sorry by Sean was just reporting what some Chinese people he knew said. He wasn’t saying “THIS IS HOW IT ALWAYS IS IN CHINA”. You read the statement without taking in the whole post.

You were the one swinging his fists because you were defensive. You dismissed the observation without even addressing it. Are you saying sean is lying? How many adopting Chinese couples do you know?

September 13, 2005 @ 10:42 am | Comment

Raj, LOL, that is one quality comment, my hats off to you.

September 13, 2005 @ 10:57 am | Comment

As an American father who adopted a girl in China several years ago, I was interested in the post and the comments. While the overall post was a good read, the attempt at humor in the first paragraph (see “Made in China” comment) was not appreciated. You can do better. Once human faces and emotions are put into the equation it can be difficult to keep up a cynical facade.

For anyone interested in further information on this topic, I recommend the Families with Children From China website

September 13, 2005 @ 12:15 pm | Comment

John, you sounded like a caring father and I’m glad that your daughter will be having a good life in the US. I personally think it is very tough to adopt a child, especially from another country that for sure will not look like you.

I was very touched when I watched a TV report a couple of weeks ago about an American couple who adopted a girl (they have a few grown kids of their own) and a few years later, she turned out to have a rare blood decease that the best hope will be a transfusion of blood from her real parents. The couple keep coming back to China trying to find the parents and they never give up hope. I didn’t watch the end so I don’t know how it ends.

September 13, 2005 @ 1:06 pm | Comment

Hello John

I wrote this post.

I apologise if you were offended at the Made in China comment. Obviously your personal experience does indeed have a very human face attached to it.

However, it was no attempt at humour on my part. I tried to do as fair a job as possible to present this emotional subject as best as I could with as many facts as I could.

I read many comments from parents who had, like you, adopted out of China, please see my above long comment to Will.

I wish you and your daughter well John. Thanks for the link to the Families with Children from China.

September 13, 2005 @ 1:37 pm | Comment

Martyn and Wawa,
No harm, no foul…..I am usually not that thin skinned, but this is a subject close to my heart.

My education and early career had been largely focused on China and Chinese, with significant time spent studying and working in China in the ’80s and ’90s…..I have not been involved in China for a number of years now, and my only connection with China and Chinese is when I teach my daughter some Chinese phrases or do my annual trek into her classroom to teach her classmates some aspect of Chinese culture and language. She loves it and the kids seem to enjoy it.


September 13, 2005 @ 3:09 pm | Comment

Woah, missed this for a while.

Wawa, I didn’t mean to offend. I spoke too generally. My friends didn’t say they’d treat an adopted like a slave, but their views on adoption WERE different from westerners’. People who adopt in the states consider the children the same as “blood family”, and that attitude seemed to be lacking from my friends.

Their attitude seemed to be more of Charity rather than Family. There are many charities for Africa/etc in American where you can “adopt” a child — pay for their needs (like the example I was responding to). But this is not what Americans mean when we talk of Adoption. Adoption means gaining a family member.

Also, when I was speaking above, I was referencing Charles Dickens, who wrote “Oliver Twist.” If you know it, you’ll know that the West hasn’t always been nice to orphans. It has improved dramatically (though foster children still have tough lives).

September 13, 2005 @ 6:08 pm | Comment

I dont like your title’industry’.

From my experience many people from orphanage,CCAA and provincial civila affairs office, adoption agency worked hard and selflessly to find a home for children in orphanage. I quit my IT job to work for an NGO, my salary is just symbol, i help many children in orphanage and families from states to match together, I dont think we are making profit.

September 13, 2005 @ 6:53 pm | Comment

Speaking of which, (Martyn’s response to John) thanks for that longish response to my comment, Martyn. May follow up by e-mail in time. It’s not imminent. But on the horizon.

September 13, 2005 @ 7:48 pm | Comment

Shortly after I moved here I asked a Chinese friend why adoption seemd so rare in China.

He said that men were highly averse to it because to most people it implied a lack of male sexual potency – again, inability to produce (male) offspring being a bigger issue in a Confucian culture. Just one local guy’s opinion, but I suspect it is one of the most significant factors. As Sean said in the opening post, it would be great to hear more Chinese comments.

Martyn, thanks for the kind words, the issue touches close to home for me – as a gay American I am very sympathetic to the plight of anyone who is barred from marriage (although there is recent encouraging news from California) 🙁

September 13, 2005 @ 9:06 pm | Comment

Adopted children are a black mark on your manhood huh? I believe it – let’s face it guys, insecure men are a plague upon this Earth. Just look at the U.S. government for evidence. And we so get to be, you know… born. We oughta show more gratitude.

Just remember, men with no kahonas are available in any country. There are guys who don’t sweat women bearing the suffering of the nation in every country (or, say, rape other countries women because thats a way to make their nation suffer… or something messed up like that). There are dudes who feel like they can’t live if their little swimmers can’t even dog paddle.

My plan for UN reform: the Peacekeepers get a really big psychiatric unit.

September 13, 2005 @ 10:13 pm | Comment

I missed the start of this conversation. A pity, because there are a lot of things I’d like to say. I’ll try to be brief (ha!):
Situation: From 1997-2000 I visited our local orphanage (small-town Jiangxi) once a week. I went with my local students and we would spend 2-3 hours playing with the children. The orphanage contained approximately 80% babies (yes, all female) and 20% older children with physical disabilities (both sexes, though the majority were female). We would play with the older children and occasionally pop into the baby room for a quick cuddle.
1. “The Dying Rooms” – I personally have seen nothing like that in reality, but, as usual, believe that EVERYTHING is true somewhere in China…so if you searched for it you possibly could find it. In ‘our’ orphanage the staff were overworked and underpaid (just like everywhere else in the world) but they were committed to the children and they did care about the children’s welfare.
2. In the late 90s the foreign-adoption boom had already started. I didn’t just see groups of adoptive parents (yes, predominantly American) in the White Swan Hotel – though the one time I stayed there in 1998 I did meet a group, it was every single time I stayed in the (then) top hotels in Nanchang, as well a pretty much every flight I took from Nanchang to Shanghai. The leaders and representatives from outside charities working with ‘our’ orphanage told me that 98% of their babies were adopted to foreign families. The turn-over was incredible.
3. Chinese perspectives on adoption? I’m not Chinese (but I’ve always got an opinion) so off we go:
a. One day a student and I were playing with the orphanage children. On the orphanage wall was a photo-montage of pictures that adoptive parents had sent back showing the babies in their new homes. The older children asked me and my student to lift them up to see the pictures. The student was puzzled and asked me to explain what the pictures were. I told him. He paused for thought, and then came out with, “Oh, those lucky babies!”
b. While most of the adoptions were to foreign families, there was a small but steady trickle of visits from local Chinese families coming to discuss possible adoptions with the orphanage administration.
c. A (Chinese) colleague’s sister and brother in law have adopted a daughter. (Not from the orphanage, but from the vegetable market!) They certainly consider her to be a full and complete family member. I suspect that the traditional attitude towards adoption is changing within China, though I don’t have enough evidence to be certain of this.
4. One-child policy perferential to men or women? Difficult to say.
a. In the cities, most – but not all- Chinese families are just as delighted at the birth of a daughter as of a son. Of course there are exceptions, but it does seem that some of the traditional bias is dying. b. In the countryside many different things are true in different areas. And that really depends on the attitude of the local officials. Sometimes you find forced abortions, othertimes you find families who are allowed to keep on having more children until they produce the magic boy. I’ve met one migrant labourer who is in his early 30s and yet has managed to have five children. (None of the children has been abandoned or fostered out, all are considered members of his family.)
c. The possibility of large numbers of unmarried Chinese men should be worrying for the Chinese government. Social instability and all that. It would be fantastic to think that parents would come to value their daughters higher and higher as a result of their raised marriage prospects, but, do you really think it’ll happen?
d. What about the other rise in China? The rise in kidnapping, the rise in human-trafficking? What are the chances that poor countryside girls and women will be more at risk of being kidnapped and forced into marriage against their will, or even sold into marriage by family members? (I don’t know the statistics, but both “The Good Women of China” and “Red China Blues” contain accounts of kidnap/sale of brides.)

September 14, 2005 @ 12:06 am | Comment

Dear John,
Thank you for sharing your experience with us. If you don’t mind, I’ll pass your story and comment on to a parent support group here. This group is formed by parents who have adopted children from China. They support each other in their roles and provide assistance to those who are in the process of adoption. Like you, they also want their children to acknowledge their Chinese heritage.

September 14, 2005 @ 12:31 am | Comment

Incidentally, a nickname for the White Swan is ‘the White Stork’ because of the sheer number of adopting American parents that come to Guangzhou. I appreciate that once the parents take over it becomes a very personal affair, but it must be said that it is something of a commoditized ‘business’. That really is not a bad thing though if more of these kids find loving parents and good homes as a result of systematization.

Also, I’d like to put an historical spin on the discussion by pointing out that adoption of children in Canton is not a new thing, albeit in a much more primitive manner. The 2nd official Portuguese voyage to China, in approximately 1520, by Simao de Andrade, saw the sailors buy children offered to them by what seemed to be Chinese merchants. In those days of course slavery and indentured servitude was nothing new. But unbeknownst to the Portuguese, the children had actually been kidnapped from their parents. And the Chinese, fearing the worst from the fan-gui, spread the rumor that the Portuguese planned to eat them.

Glad that things are much more straightforward today.

September 14, 2005 @ 12:35 am | Comment

Great points all.


Re the word “industry” in the title. I tried to be impartial until the last paragraph of the post, which contains my own opinion on the issue.

I had 10 links in the post, some were missed by Richard, but they contained every alternative opinion and aspect on the issue.

The most forceful argument in favour of adoption being a Chinese industry I found on a Christian website. The sources were ok but I was uncomfortable linking to a Christian website. However, I’ll try and paste this argument here in the comments.

Those who feel that it isn’t an industry should obviously argue aginst it – you’re doing a god job of that.

September 14, 2005 @ 3:00 am | Comment

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.