According to Reuters India plans to implement a registry for all abortions in order to cut down on abortions of female fetuses. Apparently, many families choose to abort female babies despite the law against sex determination tests. The registry will cut down on “mysterious” abortions and (hopefully) create a safer environment for women who actually would like an abortion for “an acceptable and valid reason.”
“An acceptable and valid reason,” huh? What exactly does that mean? When I first read this, I thought, Right on! The fight against gender discrimination is taking another step forward. But then I realized, Wait…what exactly is an “acceptable and valid reason”? And who exactly makes that judgment call? This same question is brought up on Feminsting.com, and now I’d like to attempt to tackle it while proposing it to our beloved readers.
On the one hand, this seems like a great step away from the preferential treatment of the male gender in India. They are trying to eliminate the abortion of females strictly because of their gender. That’s great. The problem with this registry is, who is deciding what abortions are OK and what aren’t? If the only criteria is that the abortion is not desired strictly for gender preferences, and if the register aides in providing safer options for women, then I don’t seem to have a problem with it.
I’m skeptical, though. The patriarchy runs rampant in all parts of the world. Gender discrimination is everywhere, and it seems that only in a perfect world would women have control of our own bodies and be able to decide what we can and cannot do with them. I suppose we will just have to wait it out and see what happens.