According to the Gallup survey, 40 percent of Americans prefer to have a son and only 26 percent a daughter. And its not a one off thing as the survey question has been asked in one way or the other since 1941 and everytime the preference for a boy child is more overwhelming than the girl.
Even more surprising news is in store for those who believed that the anti-girl child bias was limited to the poor and uneducated of South-East Asia as the survey reveals that Americans who are under the age-group of less than 30 say they would prefer a boy to a girl by a 54% to 27% margin.
However, the sign is a bit more encouraging among those in the 30-50 age group as the boy-preference gap declines to 12 points and to 5 points among between the ages 50 to 64. It drops to only 2 points among those who are over and above the 65 year age limit.
Surprising statistics indeed for a nation that has been the most vocal in equality across all dividing measures, While no conclusion has been arrived at for the bias against the girl child, analysts say that probably the fear of having a teenage pregnant daughter is what might be making parents go weak in the knee while expecting a child. Add to that the new technologies like artificial insemination and in vitro fertilization make it easier for hopeful parents to choose their favorite sex.
While one can understand that dowry might be the reason why people in India and Pakistan prefer to not to have a girl child lest her marriage could push them back financially, there seems to be no logical reasoning for the bias in the US where there is almost no such ill-concept in place.
While India has put in place strong laws for female foeticide to ensure that girl child is not biased against, the US has more or less no such provisions. As things come out in the poll, it is probably high time for the US to stop looking externally for ills that plague the world and rather focus on getting things in order at the domestic front.