Explain why China's Mao Zedong opposed population control during the middle decades of the twentieth century. Describe China's population policy today, noting both its success and its negative consequences.
Mao believed that a large population was critical to the success of young communist countries, and that population control initiatives were a western, capitalist attempt to undermine communist countries. China's one-child policy, enacted in 1979 limits families to one child under penalty of increased taxes, loss of housing, or other punishments, though there are exceptions made for some rural families, and more recently for some urban families. While this policy has slowed population growth in China considerably, it has also brought a rise in selective and non-selective abortions and infanticide, particularly in the case of girls. Consequently, the gap between numbers of men and women in China is growing.