PLEASE NOTE: The following news story link, as well as the contents of this post, contains information that could be potentially upsetting, as it deals with the subject of abortion and other acts against fetuses.
You may have read recently the news story, a follow-up, of sorts, of a news report from August 2011, about how South Korean customs officials have confiscated 17,000 pills since last August that have been smuggled across the border from China–pills containing the the powdered remains of aborted and still-born babies. The pills are thought to provide a cure-all effect and to increase stamina.
At this point I pause because I am in disbelief that not only am I witnessing this as part of my world but typing these words in a space I consider a reflection of me.
I encourage you to read the full story as reported by Richard Shears and Rob Cooper of the UK’s Daily Mail, or the story reported by The San Francisco IB Times last August.
I’ll admit that, for the briefest of seconds, the health-conscious, practical side of me considered, “Are there any medicinal benefits to imbibing ground human remains? If fetuses were set to be destroyed anyhow, wouldn’t it seem more natural, more “circle of life,” to allow them to be put to use?” At which point I realized the stomach-churning repercussions of having such thoughts: power brings need; need brings greed (and, uh, then there’s the whole cannibalism aspect). Add into this the frequency of abortions in China, for the purpose of population control, and it adds up to a sickening scenario of human trafficking. (In case you have not yet read the two articles I linked above, the pills have not only shown to have zero medical benefit but contain high amounts of dangerous bacteria.)
I am not a religious person, but I do prescribe to the idea that all living things/materials possess energy. The subject of abortion aside, how does a country, a culture, an industry, an individual get to the point of accepting the idea of using the ground pieces of a DEAD PERSON to fuel their stamina? I’m accepting of many seemingly unorthodox practices (by Western standards), heck, I’ve still got pills made from my placenta sitting in my fridge, and I know the value of seeking healing through what is natural to this world. What I can’t fathom is a cultural disregard for LIFE, ENERGY, and the RESPECT that surrounds it. (I am referencing the culture of those making and accepting the offensive pills; I am not reflecting on the Chinese culture as a whole.)
This is the first I had heard of this story, though, clearly, the baby-pill trade has been going on for some time. Is it just too shocking for us to acknowledge on a grander, world-wide scale? Why aren’t more people reporting or writing about this? Have we given up on China?