20.1 C
Bucharest
September 28, 2021
EDITORIAL

Poverty undermines Romania

Aside from the luminous event of Pascal holidays, Romania witnessed a string of most difficult experiences, as the welcome rainfalls following a prolonged drought has been quite damaging here and there despite water levels being nowhere near those seen in the past. Roads, Roads and bridges were damaged, and some localities stranded in Valcea County and the Olt Valley. With the coming of spring, unemployment goes up, and not down at it used to at this time of the year, mostly among high school and university graduates, and this is exactly why they make the bulk of the unemployed seeking to emigrate abroad, or the employees paid under the table, with work accidents as the immediate result. The public is hardly aware of these facts, and even when they do, the information is scarce and brief at best.Public attention is instead focused on actions by the so-called “civil society” against a recent bill of law on the psychological counselling of pregnant women seeking an abortion.

Obscure, yet virulent factors attack it on grounds of banning abortions infringes on individual rights, and therefore anti-democratic and dictatorial, and of trying to turn the clock back more than 40 years. While debates are welcome, unless impartial, it turns into the opposite of what it should be actually. Instead of laying emphasis on the optimum solution irrespective of the issue, it boosts exactly the tragic aspect of any social problem left unsolved, such as the demographic issue, considering Romania is experiencing a demographic bust. Official statistics show that the number of abortions made over the past 50 years in this country near 22 million, which means a Romanian population roughly the size of that in 1990 has vanished.This phenomenon is even more tragic as abortions are proclaimed as “an attribute of individual freedom”, a monstrous “European openness” that led to the number of abortions in this county exceeding the 1 million mark, a tragic reality compounded by Romania also having the highest infant mortality rate, and an increasingly high incidence of cardio-vascular, broncho-pulmonary and renal diseases, diabetes and even AIDS, Romania’s fate appears to be sealed, even if its name may remain, considering the growth of Roma population by a percentage rate matching the decline of ethnic Romanians.However, this tragic reality does not mean abortions shall be banned, as pregnant women are the ones to decide whether they want to have a baby or not, mainly that  such decision is induced by the chronic poverty that more than half of Romania’s population has been struggling with for the past two decades. Thirty-four percent of Romanian pregnant women never get to see a doctor either from lack of money, transportation, or doctors available. As a result, the infant mortality rate is rising year by year, mostly in the rural environment. Moreover, over 50 pc of Romania’s female population is unaware even of a rudimentary sexual education, despite the pathetic promises made by the many education ministers during the past twenty something years. The paltry health and education budgets would not help improve the situation either, with the former set at a meagre 4 pc, way lower than the EU average of 11 per cent. Decision makers, irrespective of their political hue, are unable to substantially reduce neither tax dodging, oil pipe thefts or cigarette smuggling, nor corruption deeds. What then could be abnormal about a pregnant woman receiving free psychological counselling? Should not this be a means to fill their medical and educational gaps? We should nonetheless admit that the suspicions surrounding the fairness of government decisions, given many of them are the outcome of underground manoeuvres, such as those that compelled the premier to give additional funds to government ministers to ‘personally” organize the upcoming election campaign. Such actions also prove an incentive to frequent blackmailing and threats against Romania. Its production playing such an important role, led to some historians to say that Romania was admitted to the EU only after its domestic production, medicines included, had been done with. This is how Romania has become a lucrative consumer market for foreign manufacturers, who transfer their profits abroad, while many of our fellow nationals facing the spectre of an early death remain “ours” forever..

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