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article imageOp-Ed: The Democratic case against Myanmar population control

By Q Fulton     Jun 5, 2015 in Politics
The US State Department and women's rights group have banded against Myanmar population control, as its been become clear the legislation limits the religious rights of minorities and Muslims.
President Thein Sein of Myanmar has signed The Health Care for Population Control Act that grants power to the government in 14 states to seek population control. The law has immense support from the ultra-Nationalist Buddhist and The World Health Organization.
As reported by Sara Perria of The Guardian, the purpose of the is law to “reduce child mortality,” and addresses “mortality rates and food shortage.” But opponents of the law, including women’s rights groups and the US Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken, is “deeply concerned,” on the effect the act will have on the Muslim community.
The application of law has reportedly been applied unequally in communities. Mostly, Muslim communities have been asked to oblige to the law -- although they only make up 4 percent of the population.
In condemnation, the US State Department has said, “We are particularly concerned that the bill could provide a legal basis for discrimination through coercive, uneven application of birth control policies, and differing standards of care for different communities across the country.”
Chris Blake of Bloomberg reports that 33-year-old Sandar Myat Min, a Rohingya minority and Muslim living in Myanmar, after giving birth to her second child was notified she must wait three years before having another child. Needless to say she is outraged, stating “People have their rights regardless of their religion,” and “If the population were too high like China, I accept that we should control it. But here it’s not like that.”
For followers of Islam, “God grants humankind,” and “Children’s rights are not guaranteed by the actions of their parents, their communities, or even their governments. God Himself guarantees children’s rights.” Also, “Islam establishes a legal framework, and embodies a code of ethics, designed to protect the rights of an individual including his or her right to live in a secure society. For children, security is of the utmost importance. The rights of a child begin even before birth; in fact they begin before conception.”
The issue at hand is the rise of radical Islamic supporters has taken its toll on countries, including the United States, Europe, and the Middle East. From fear and frustration, people have allowed them to be identified with already established anti-Muslim groups that take advantage of controversial subjects, and use them for their own propaganda devices. This is exactly what the ultra-Nationalist Buddhist has done, propagated fears.
The Health Care for Population Control Act sparks a controversy in Muslim communities, much like the Religious Freedom Restoration Act in the United States. The RFRA allows businesses to discriminate based on religious freedom. Most disconcerting, both acts allow the government to mandate what is a corrective approach to freedom, in deity and in life. The government uses the excuse that it’s to protect society when really its true intent is to control society.
Besides, what happened to a persons personal right to freedom of religion? And one’s right to raise a family? Human Rights Watch has reported the intent of this law is to eliminate a religious group that the Myanmar government opposes, in this case Muslims. Why are we faulting nonviolent Muslims for the actions of wayward vigilantes?
As a centrist pro-life Democrat, I oppose such legislation that would permit the government to dictate which communities have unlimited freedom, while others is limited. This is borderline Nazism and should be fought until eliminated. I also disagree with discrimination and hate in any form.
Muslims in Myanmar are not responsible for the economic despair, much less the decline in the medical industry as this act slyly seeks to suggest -- an excuse the government uses in substitute of its true intention: to decrease the size of the Muslim community. Muslims have become the scapegoat in Myanmar. The economic and resource decline is the fault of government corruption and lack of leadership, not Muslims.
If terrorism is such a plight, the government should deal with it hands-on, and not with application to dictate corruption on vulnerable communities. Religious bigotry should not be permitted in law.
That said, all walks of life, from race, culture, religion, and sex, should defend one’s right to life. If the Duggars can have 19 kids in America, so shall Muslims in Myanmar, if they so desire.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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