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36 comments

Maybe stop treating women like shit??? The epidemic of cameras in washrooms and the fact they're trying to take away the ministry for women's rights speaks for itself. You want a war, then women will refuse you being anywhere near them. Stop being evil scumbags and have some humanity.

[–] GenZ-ProWoman 21 points Edited

Exactly. Women are the wellspring of new life and we can and should use that power to require men to shape up, or watch their nation/culture/lineage die.

[–] crodish 24 points Edited

What I never understand is why the focus on the birth rate is always that it has to stay the same or be higher. I know it's to do with population balance and needing enough young people to be around to take care of the old folk but to me it never made sense, it just results in an escalating and neverending case of birthing more people who will need to take care of more people. Just let the population number drop naturally. We're so overpopulated on this earth as it is.

I think it's because pro-natalism is baked in to pretty much everything everywhere. It's one of those species of propaganda that's like the water fish swim in...you're not even aware of it, it's so ubiquitous. Sure, they can come up with 'reasons' why replacement pop is 'necessary', but I'm sure anyone who made an ounce of effort could come up with just as many advantages of a shrinking pop.

I don't really understand it either. I think most people are afraid of what it will do to the economy to have so many dependent on so few, but ultimately I believe all of this is a result of capitalism run amok. There is so little regulation or taxation of corporations, and they are sucking us dry. They won't give back unless forced, and no one is even trying to do so. I don't know what the solution is if governments won't do anything about it.

Corporate taxes are honestly a bad idea because the ultimately get paid by consumers through higher prices and employees through lower wages and investors through lower returns. It's much more efficient to just tax investors, consumers and employees directly

The solution is to continue making technological advancements and automate more work, instead of pumping out babies to be fodder for older generations. But if THAT happened, we’d have to reconcile the failings of capitalism and restructure economies, and that’d threaten the social status of too many rich people… The earth can’t support 8 billion indefinitely, shrinking population is good.

I think its more of a concern now than it was in the past because people live longer now. Even just a few decades ago, most people didn't live past 65 (which is why social security is set to that age). Now people routinely live to be 80+. But the tradeoff is that most people over 70 cannot work and likely need some form of regular medical care to stay alive (which costs money). Thats why it's a problem if the birthrate is low.

Barring depletion of resources like famine, a country's strength rests on it having a bigger population. For small countries like S. Korea and Japan, a small population means their economy would shrink even putting aside the older population. The country would become less competitive on the global stage. How do you expand when you don't have enough people to do the work? Or fewer people to contribute to innovation and diversity of ideas?

Also for them, there is some concern of their race of people becoming obscure. The extent of the fear might be more psychological than real, but it's there.

It's because old people can't really work and be productive but are instead consuming resources, especially expensive healthcare. If we don't want old people to live in poverty and if we want the economy to not implode, we need working young people. No need for the population to increase, a replacement rate is fine. Otherwise there just won't be enough of the things we take for granted now, such as food, basic services, etc

I get that explanation, but I think it's a bit of a too-easy just-so story that everyone buys. It wouldn't take that much imagination to envisage a shrinking society that worked just fine. Imagine, for example, if people over 50 or 60 weren't treated as though they belong on a scrap heap. People in wealthy societies tend to be a lot healthier later in life, and could just as easily fill the ranks taking care of the truly infirm elders, if there was any kind of effort to make that happen. Ditto, if elders weren't pushed into retirement villages/homes, and extended families were encouraged...we already have grandparents looking after grandkids. There are so many ways a shrinking pop could work just fine. I don't think it's a simple zero sum game of needing x number of 'young' to care for/fund x numer of elders.

Ditto, if elders weren't pushed into retirement villages/homes, and extended families were encouraged...

How will they have extended families to care for them if their descendants aren't having kids? Extended families caring for elders used to be the norm. Nursing homes became more common when families became smaller and it became harder to share the difficult work of taking care of an invalid grandparent.

Also, when a disabled relative needs care from the family, that burden almost always falls disproportionately on the female relatives. So saying that extended families should just take on all the elders is just asking women & girls to take on more unpaid domestic labor

Well, with so many people not having kids or having only one kid extended families kind of disappear or don't exist.

What you're proposing is extending the retirement age and basically forcing people to work later in life. Which is fine for some people and some jobs but those that do physical labor for example are screwed. Korea is a health problem conscious society with low levels of obesity but still, their elderly need way more and more expensive healthcare than young people. In a place like the US, obesity is everywhere and people become unable to work way earlier

A cultural shock I got in Slovakia ia the quantity of old people working not si demanding jobs. When in LAM people over 50 have problems getting any kind of job, I think it's a bit better now but for corporations at 40 you are dead.

[+] [Deleted] 2 points

I would also like to add that South Korea (like Japan and China) treats single mothers very poorly. Divorced single mother? Partner left/passed away? Decided to give birth independently without the father? Your child might not even get citizenship in some of these countries and you might have to pay a fine!

In other words, when these countries’ governments whine about the declining birthrates, they mean for married heterosexual couples only.

They want more births. On their own exact terms. Not the women’s.

South Korean is a very patriarchal society--this is one of the few ways South Korean women have of objecting to the society they live in.

Yes. My mother is Korean, so I've seen that firsthand. I'm not at all surprised at the reaction to these women, and I am so proud of them and everything they've accomplished.

Good for them. Keep the jobs, ladies, stay safe and healthy, dont carry on the traumas of the nation.

I've read pretty horrible shit Korean men say about women and Korean feminists. It's hilarious how men act surprised and confused.

Men have made their bed, why don't they lay in it? This is what men wanted, right?

Don't they always say "shouldn't have spread your legs!" as a defense to forced birth, absentee fathers, absurd financial burdens on mothers, etc.? They should be celebrating.

I struggled to decide which circle to post this in. I read one of the reddit threads about it, and unsurprisingly I didn't see anyone mention the 4B movement. There's no telling if it's having an effect on birth rates, but I wouldn't be surprised if it does contribute at least a little bit.

Thoughts?

They just elected a president who ran on an anti-feminist campaign so I wouldn’t be surprised.

If you have an interest in South Korean feminism I recommend the book “Kim Jiyoung, Born 1982” by Cho Nam-Joo. It’s not specifically related to birth strikes, but it’s a book published recently that has sparked massive conversation throughout the country.

I read it and was amazed that it was so controversial at all. The book itself paired with the wrathful male rage it caused is a true testament to how misogynistic the culture is.

The title was chosen because Kim Jiyoung is one of the most popular female names in the country, and it’s supposed to represent how the every day woman in Korea is held back and oppressed by Korean society and the men in their lives. She even put citations in for certain facts so they couldn’t be disputed, despite it being a fictional novel.

Highly recommend!

Thanks for this, I was just thinking to myself that I'd love to contextualize this a bit more but I know almost nothing about South Korean feminism and the misogyny rampant in its culture.