Ho Chi Minh City - Economic
growth in Vietnam
has resulted in an improvement in the quality of life, but has also helped
spread a lifestyle marked by selfishness and consumerism. These two elements
are a disruptive factor for the family, always the reference point for every
citizen, the erosion of social and moral values has also triggered a series of
consequences for the population, particularly youth. Among these, the most
significant - and negative at the same time - is the rise in the number of
abortions, that today in Ho Chi Minh City alone are "equal to the number
of births" with statistics to generate a situation of social unrest.
The latest figures reported by the Financial Times, for the first quarter of 2012, indicate that growth of gross domestic product (GDP) amounted to 4%. However, uncontrolled development goes hand in hand with social injustices and problems that are bound to increase with time. Professor Nguyen T.N., from the maternity ward of Tu Du hospital in the former Saigon, told AsiaNews that "the number of abortions is extremely worrying." Each year there are 700 thousand cases throughout Vietnam and in Ho Chi Minh City alone, a total of 8.3 million inhabitants, there are annually 100 thousand births and "as many" cases of voluntary interruption of pregnancy.
The doctor and teacher reports the data from the structure he works in: in Tu Du maternity hospital the number of births is about 45 thousand, but "abortions exceed 30 thousand." And across the country, he adds, the fact of "large or small fetuses" killed by their mothers varies between 1.2 million and 1.6 million. 5% of mothers gave birth before age 18 and 15% before 20. To explain the phenomenon, critics and experts point the finger at "pragmatism and consumerism."
Fr. Joseph, of the Archdiocese of Saigon, explains that "consumerism is eroding the ethnic-cultural traditions of the Vietnamese people" and he confirms that the new generations are imbued with "selfishness and insensitivity." He hopes the authorities will intervene and collaborate with religious leaders, particularly in sensitive sectors such as education and health. "The efforts of religious organizations - says the priest - are able to reduce social ills in family and social structures."