Saturday, October 13, 2007

Terra Incognita 5

Terra Incognita
Issue 5
A Publication of Seth J. Frantzman
Jerusalem, Israel


October 5th, 2007

*note on last weeks supplement: Someone has brought it to my attention that last week’s article ‘The life of the Muslim (terrorist)’ was both inappropriate, hysterical, in bad taste and would lead people to not take the author seriously. I have taken this critique to heart, and hopefully this week’s columns as well as those in the future will reflect more depth, thought, and maturity. However it should be pointed out that this article on the hypothetical Muslim terrorist was supposed to be a reflection on the lives of the 9/11 hijackers, a hypothetical insight into the lives they probably led. Many pieces of information from the biographies of the 19 hijackers were cobbled together in my hypothetical biography, including details about their visits to strip clubs, their birthplace of Saudi Arabia and their lives Germany and attendance at government funded Mosques in Frankfurt. My article was also based upon my own reflection of a piece by Ian Buruma in The New York Review of Books, on September 27, 2007 titled ‘his toughness problem-and ours’ regarding a recent book by Norman Podhoretz. In the article Mr. Buruma, an Anglo-Dutch contributor to the New Yorker, noted that poverty and dictatorship in the Middle East and the Muslim world are the main causes of terrorism. My hypothetical life of a Muslim terrorist was supposed to reflect the reality, almost all terrorists whether Muslim or Communist or Anarchist, are born middle class or wealthy. They almost always grow up or are educated in democracies or reasonably free societies. In fact one might reasonable argue that wealth and democracy are better incubators and indicators of terrorism than vice-versa. India, the United States, Sri Lanka, Nigeria, Thailand, the Philippines, Europe and Israel suffer more terror than most dictatorships. Furthermore the poorest societies that are also dictatorships, such as those found across Africa, rarely if ever produce terrorists. The most recent African terrorists have come from Kenya, a rare island of reasonable democracy that contains a middle class. Perhaps it would have been more high brow, proper, and less hysterical, less bordering on racism or Islamophobia to have given this introduction to last weeks ‘The Life of the Muslim (terrorist).’ Apologies.*

Here are this week’s articles below and attached. The full articles appear below these short abstracts. This weeks theme is race, contemporary racism and western society.

1) Race, class and prostitution: Prostitution is not the universal phenomenon we have been led to believe. Neither is it the ‘world’s oldest profession.’ It is neither natural to society, nor does it exist on a one to one basis with society, growing as society does. It is instead a distorted, racist world of slavery and hypocrisy that is often ignored.

2) The tragedy of victimhood: Well meaning leftists have convinced themselves that the world is divided into the ‘racist whites’ and ‘victimized non-whites.’ By the same token minorities in the United States have been led to believe that they cannot succeed due to their skin color, because of ever present racism and endemic ‘white privilege.’ This is a great tragedy.

3) My Chinese child: Westerners are increasingly adopting children from non-western countries. While one cannot say if this is right or wrong it is worthwhile to ponder what this says about the values of the west and its inability to reproduce itself naturally.

Race, class and prostitution
Seth J. Frantzman
October 1st, 2007

The great mantra of the West is that “prostitution is the world’s oldest occupation.” To be sure there is evidence that Justinian’s wife was a prostitute, that the Crusader armies had prostitutes with them at the siege of Acre and that in Pompeii there is a brothel with diagrams of the women’s specialties drawn above their rooms. Many scholars of Near Eastern studies love to point to the famous ‘temple prostitutes’ supposedly found in ancient Mesopotamia. The Kama Sutra and the courtesans of India and the concubines of Asia are surely evidence of some form of sexual ‘work.’

Even if its not the world’s oldest occupation, since this statement hinges on the meaning of the word ‘occupation’, it has apparently been around for a long time. It has almost always existed in cities. Since prostitutes are very rarely regarded as a positive part of society, and are frequently reviled and below the law, they must exist in an urban environment that provides anonymity and the ability to hide them alongside other vices such as opium dens, drug dealers, the mafia and pubs. Since many societies that contain prostitution also contain honor codes and shame women who are prostitutes, women must work their trade, or be forced to work, in brothels in an urban environment, a rural prostitute would be either murdered by her family or driven from the town where she resided. The only slight deviation to this rule might be strange frontier societies such as the American West where brothels did exist even in relatively minor towns, but due to the fact that the women inhabiting them had all been imported from, or emigrated from the east coast, they remained anonymous.
But prostitution does not exist in a vacuum. It is not an equal equation of every society that has a certain number of urban centers and a certain number of people produces X number of prostitutes. Some societies produce more. Some societies import more. Some societies spend more per capita on them.

People usually associate prostitutes with poverty. The phrase “she was driven to prostitution” is a common one. It implies that women who end up as prostitutes are poor and poverty stricken. While this may be barely accurate it is not true that all prostitutes come from poor environments or that they come from the lowest portions of society. Furthermore prostitutes very infrequently come from the poorest countries in the world.

So who are the prostitutes? Which women are sold into sex slavery year after year? Which culture produces prostitutes? Which culture consumes them? Where are the most prostitutes per capita born and where do they end their lives? It is not an easy topic to delve into. But it is certainly one that sheds light on a number of the problems with many cultures.

Mark Kurlansky, author of a Continent of Islands remarks that in the Caribbean ten years ago the most common prostitutes were from the Dominican Republic. Kurlansky explained that the black and white populations of the Caribbean, the whites being tourists and the blacks being local residents, desired mixed ‘mulatto’ women because they were either seen as ‘exotic’ or unobtainable. For the blacks the idea of sex with a ‘white’ mulatto women was fetishistic. It said something about conquest, and about revenge for the trauma of slavery and poverty, degradation of those usually beyond their grasp (V.S Naipal also has something to say about this in his essay ‘Comrade X and the Black Power killings in Trinidad’). For the whites the desire was apparently slightly imbued with racism and the desire to dominate and to experience the ‘exotic black’ mulatto women (apparently a fully ‘blue’ black African prostitute would no longer be ‘exotic’, her features would be undesirable to the white clientele). Whatever the truth behind the instincts of the ‘johns,’ Kurlansky found mulatto prostitutes outnumbered the local blacks wherever he traveled. He surmised that the reason they came from the Dominican Republic was that there was a large supply of relatively poor Mulatto women on that island. But the Dominican Republic is not the poorest island in the Caribbean. Neither is it over-crowded. So why did it have such a supply of loose women? That may not be an easy question to answer. Was its society more open? Was it easier for women to leave home at a young age and to travel alone and be taken into the world of the sex trade? But let us rest this story at the fact that the majority of prostitutes in the Caribbean were of a mixed race background, which means they were a minority and thus were different in their race than the clientele. Let us also rest on the fact that it was not the poorest island, Haiti, that produced the majority of the prostitutes.

In Israel, beginning in the 1990s with the large scale immigration of Jews and non-Jews from the former Soviet Union, a virtual tidal wave of prostitutes broke on the shores of Judea. Like a biblical scourge some 5,000 or more women from Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union were being imported as sex slaves into Israel every year. But Israel may not have been the first country to be swamped by the post-Communist prostitute invasion. Turkey was also invaded by them. The ‘Natashas’ became famous in Prague. They showed up in Japan and also in South Africa. Then they became common in the United Arab Emirates and farther afield. Advertisements in London in 2007 invited clients to come to brothels stocked with ‘Polish supermodels.’ When the supply of Russian prostitutes began to ebb, they were replaced by Ukrainian girls and then Moldovans. A report from 2002 noted that 120,000 Ukrainian women were trafficked as sex slaves in 2001 alone. For a country of 23 million women (46 million people) that means that between the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991 and today more than 1 million or more Ukrainian women have become prostitutes. Since the age pyramid in the Ukraine is shaped like a funnel (with more old people than young), of the 5 million Ukrainian women between 15 and 27, one in five or more had become a sex slave or prostitute. One in five women. The report noted that 10% of prostitutes in Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, Italy, Greece and Spain, were Ukrainian. That’s only Ukraine. If one were to add in the percentage of prostitutes in these places and elsewhere originating in the post-Communist nations the percentage would rise to more than 60-80% in many places.
People like to pretend that the reason that post-communist countries produced a tidal wave of whoredom was because they were poor. Communism ‘collapsed.’ But it collapsed mostly on the elderly and middle aged, trained professionals and pensioners lost everything. Their state guaranteed jobs, their security, their years of service to the motherland. The young did not lose out to the same degree. A 10 year old girl didn’t lose out the way a 50 year old woman did. So why is it that the 10 year old girl in 1990 had almost a 20% chance of becoming a prostitute if she was from the Ukraine? If one adds in all the other types of sexual entertainment such as pornography and stripping, she might have had a 50% chance of becoming a sex worker. Why? It wasn’t poverty for one thing. Ukraine may have been poorer than England in 1995, but it wasn’t poorer than Africa, or many Middle Eastern Countries. It was wealthier in many respects than parts of Mexico and other parts of Central and South America. So why did it supply so many women to the world, the to dark hole of sex slavery from whence few if any returned? Why did its main export become women? After all we aren’t counting all the women who became ‘mail order brides’ or simply emigrated? Between 1990 and 2007 Ukraine became virtually devoid of women between the ages 15 and 27. How did that happen and why?
Ukraine became a ‘pimpers paradise’ for two reasons. Its women were blond and blue eyed and thus desirable(like the mulattos). Its culture had no tradition of honor or shame because for 80 years it had suffered under the atheistic yoke of Communism which never encouraged modesty among women or proscribed shame for those women who were seen as ‘loose.’ There was no culture in the Ukraine that demanded women stay home or occupy a traditional place in society, and there was no punishment for young women who strayed morally, there was no restraint on women traveling alone abroad to seek work. An extremely free society, with no morals, produced a generation of women who would never return and most of whome would end their days locked in a room in a foreign nation servicing 10 men a day so a foreigner could make profit of them (ironically Communism is still seen as having offered women ‘freedom’ so it may be a surprise to note the degree to which women in post-communist societies simply disappeared to become slaves. In this respect ‘freedom’ is a double-edged sword, women in Eastern Europe are free to believe advertisements that offer them money as ‘waitresses’ in Dubai, and they are therefore free to become slaves whereas a Saudi Muslim women may not travel abroad without the permission of a male relative, she is not free, but her form of slavery is no worse than that enjoyed by so many ‘free’ women who become prostitutes). A communist society had produced the ultimate alienation of labor, women were sold as chattel for $2,000 a girl, to be sold to the highest bidder and raped until they died. It wasn’t their poverty. It was their culture and the desirability of their blond hair and ‘fair’ skin that led them astray.

It is surely a touchy subject that exposes the fact that prostitution is not a one to one game. Prostitutes and ‘sex workers’ in the United States are invariably white. They are almost all derived from the middle class, which is also mostly white. Thailand is not the poorest country in Asia but it produces more than its fair share of prostitutes. Indonesia, by contrast, being poorer and Muslim, produces few. In Israel there are Jewish prostitutes but no Muslim or Arab ones, despite the fact that Jews make up the wealthier sectors of society. In England there is no shortage of English prostitutes despite the incredible wealth of the country. There are, perhaps needless to say, no Pakistani sex workers, despite the fact that they make up the poorer sectors of society in England. In Albania and Macedonia and Kosovo, the Albanian triangle, the local Muslim Albanians, despite their poverty, produce few prostitutes for the brothel cities that service the Nato forces and the locals, but tens of thousands of Eastern European women from Moldova and Ukraine pass through the area as slaves on their way to Europe. In Turkey there are few native born prostitutes but there are a fair share of Armenian prostitutes and large numbers of other foreign prostitutes mostly from Russia and the Ukraine. Turks are poorer by and large than their northern neighbors, but they provide few if any of the prostitutes. It may not be a surprise to find that Turks enjoy the irony that the Armenians who they massacred now work in Turkey as sex slaves, but no longer exist as a people in a land that they once were indigenous to. Perhaps the Germans enjoy the same irony that the very people they massacred and destroyed in the Second World War, the Russians, Ukrainians and Poles, now provide Germans with sexual entertainment in Prague. There is a deep seated racist fetish that lurks behind prostitution. The Nazis accused the Jews of making up the majority of prostitutes and pimps in 1920s Germany (although pictures of German women offering ‘Mutter und Tochter’ sex don’t bare this out), but the same Nazis established brothels for SS officers in the concentration and death camps. Their pretended hatred for the immorality of prostitution and miscegenation was not born out in their actions during the Final Solution.
In India and Egypt in the 19th century there were entire castes of ‘dancing girls.’ In Egypt they were known as ‘Alma’ and in India they were known as ‘Bayadere’. In the book Dancing Girls of Lahore Louise Brown chronicles this caste of nominally non-Muslim ‘dancing girls’ and how their virgins are sold to sheikhs from Dubai. Edward Lane’s famous 1836 Manners and Customs of Modern Egyptians includes an entire chapter on public dancing girls. He describes them as a tribe known as ‘Ghawazee’ He notes that they go about unveiled, dressing in public as Muslim Egyptian women dress only in the Harem or in private. He mentions that they consume alcohol, something forbidden to Muslims. In 19th century Greece, before and after the liberation from Ottoman rule the country was renowned for its large number of prostitutes, both Jewish and Greek, but never Turkish or Muslim.
In Palestine in 1917 Sir Ronald Storrs, the first British governor of Jerusalem, found numerous houses of prostitution. He found that they were inhabited usually by Syrian Christian women, imported for use in the flesh trade. In the book Newsgirl in Palestine by Barbara Beard published during the British mandate she spends a part of a chapter describing the Christian and Jewish prostitutes of the country (“all the prostitutes in Tel Aviv are Jewesses, but in Jerusalem and Haifa you may find local Christians-Armenians and Greeks”), needless to say neither Christians nor Jews were the majority in Palestine in the 1930s when the book was written and the clientele, as the prostitute ‘Ruth’ describes in the book were not all Jews and Christians ( “in the winter if I am having a bad time I go up to Beyrouth [sic] or Tripoli or Damascus for a little time and get an engagement in a cabaret there.”) As is the case in modern day Prague and Turkey it may be no surprise that the former abusive overlord, the Turks or Germans or Muslim Arabs, now has his choice of prostitutes among the formerly suppressed, Jews, Armenians, Greeks. The situation is no more different today. A recent article on prostitution in Haaretz noted that the prostitutes “feel sorry” for the Arab clientele, who are unable to find women in their local villages (because the same Arab men who go to prostitutes are the same ones who forbid their sisters from leaving the house due to ‘morality’). It may be no surprise that upon the death of King Fahd of Saudi Arabia the Economist eulogized him as a “modern Arab statesman who could be found in Beirut with a Lebanese beauty on each arm.” He was ‘modern’ because he flew to Beirut to cavort with Christian sex workers there? He was ‘modern’ because he cheated on his wife while laws in his country forbid his wife to drive a car or go outside with her hair uncovered? It goes without mentioning that the sex industry in Beirut is entirely made up of either imported women from Eastern Europe, Armenians or local Christian women. Of the other confessions represented in the government, Druze, Sunnis and Shias, there are no prostitutes.

The massive amount of prostitution found in Southeast Asia does not exist equally across the countries. Prostitutes are common in Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand and Burma. But just across the border in Muslim Pakistan, Indonesia and Malaysia the prostitutes are either imported from the neighboring Buddhist prostitution fleshpots or are local minorities such as Hindus or Chinese.

Prostitution is not a universal phenomenon. It is not this thing that occurs naturally in every society, in every culture and among every people. Prostitutes are derived from certain classes, certain stations in life, certain cultures and in most places where they exist the majority of them are made up of a certain race, religion or ethnicity that is not always that of the majority and usually represents the deep racist and fetishistic attitudes of the clientele. From the Dominican mulattos in the Caribbean to the blond haired and blue eyed Ukrainians ‘working’ in Dubai to the Nepalese imported to Calcutta to the Thais and Russians imported to Japan, to the Armenians re-enslaved in Turkish brothels to the Moldovans in Kosovo, prostitution has an often times sickening, tragic and racist side to it that is all too often ignored in the statement ‘the world’s oldest profession.’

The tragedy of victimhood
Seth J. Frantzman
October 4th, 2007

Not long ago I received a forwarded letter entitled ‘White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack’ by Peggy McIntosh’ which had apparently been posted by someone named Andre at the Northern California Indian Development Council. Peggy McIntosh is the associate director of the Wellesley Collage Center for Research on Women. Her strange article can be found at In response to her musings I composed an article entitled ‘What is White Privilege?’ which appears here: at a website run by Robert J. Miller, an author. Soon after I began to receive mail from people that disagreed.

One person named Jeremiah Davis explained to me that:“Jews are white. Irish, Italians, and white Catholics are white. I workwith Mexicans who say they are ‘white’. They aren't white. They are brown.Believe me, they know it when they wake up and look in the mirror. White‘rednecks’, ‘trailer trash’, etc. are raised like sheep or, as we used tosay where I came from originally, ‘raised like mushrooms: fed bullshit and
kept in the dark.’ ”

But the most interesting response was from Dominic Herrera who noted the following:
“as a member of that privileged class you have no idea what type of prejudicial treatment the rest of ‘us dark skinned people live with’, the only way you might possibly understand, is to become dark, and be treated as a second class person.”

It isn’t necessary to quibble with these types of statements, what is most interesting is to wonder about the frame of mind of the type of people that believe them. The number of people who believe that they can and should divide the world into ‘white’ and ‘non-white’ and the number of people who believe that they as ‘non-white’ people are destined to be ‘second class’ because of their skin color is quite large. Mostly these people come from the middle college educated classes but they also can be found among the working poor and the elite. They are all invariably on the left of the political spectrum.

It is a tragedy that because of perceived notions of racism people have actually convinced themselves that due to some invisible hand of ‘white privilege’ they cannot succeed. There is, of course, a supreme irony in this victimhood. It begins with a person deciding that he is ‘non-white.’ Then he claims that racists hate ‘non-white’ people. Then he comes to believe that due to his ‘non-white’ skin color he cannot succeed and is doomed to failure and victimization because of secret, hidden, all-powerful ‘white privilege.’

In a sense the kind of person who deludes themselves like this not only implicitly accepts the racist’s ideology but also dooms himself to failure. Any ‘white’ person who believes that there is such a thing as ‘white privilege’ that implicitly divides the world between ‘white’ and ‘non-white’ not only adheres to a nazi-like race theory but embraces it while pretending to condemn it. This is the ultimate irony of everyone who dwells to deeply on ‘racism’ and seeks to always expose prejudice, by believing so deeply in the racial divisions of society they accept the racists argument that society is divided on racial lines rather than ideological, religious, ethnic, linguistic or class lines.
But the fate of those who believe themselves destined to be victims due to their skin color is truly tragic. These are usually people who otherwise might well have succeeded. They might well have accomplished things and built themselves up professionally and financially. By believing, however, that they are doomed to failure because of racism and bias and prejudice and the hidden hand of ‘white privilege’ they will never succeed. Imagine what it must be like to wake up everyday and believe oneself to be a second-class person. Those who believe such things ask us to ‘walk in their footsteps.’ But for most of us that is not possible whether we fit into their category of ‘white’ or ‘non-white.’ For a successful and intelligent person who has overcome obstacles it is difficult to surrender to the temptation of being a neer-do-well victim. It is not only physically impossible for a ‘white’ person to change his skin, but it is also mentally unlikely that this ‘white’ person can perceive himself as ‘the victim.’ Victimhood and its ideology is not a racial thing, probably more ‘white’ people buy into this idea that they are privileged, than minorities buy into the idea that a hidden hand keeps them down. That is, after all, the bane of the WASP-rot culture of portions of America.
Much of the last forty years has been spent telling minorities in America that they cannot succeed because of their skin color. Blacks cannot succeed because racism is everywhere. Whether they are on the playground or watching TV or driving their car or applying for a mortgage, the entire system is racist. After all we were informed just last week that “there are more black men in prison than in college”(there are 15.9 million American college students, 4.3 million are considered ‘minorities.’ 40% of blacks attend college while 46% of whites do so. There are 1.7 million black students in U.S colleges. 42 percent of black female high school graduates attend college. There are 2.2 million Americans in prison and 7 million in prison, probation or on parole). According to the Socialist Worker in the UK, “The US penal system discriminates against black people. Some 12.6 percent of black men in their late 20s are behind bars, compared to 3.6 percent for Hispanic men and 1.6 percent for white. The ethnic make-up of prisons also displays the deep racism that characterizes US society. Black men in the US are more likely to go to prison than to university.” According to the New York Times “another important finding was that 10.4 percent of black men ages 25 to 29, or 442,300 people, were in [federal or state] prison last year. By comparison, 2.4 percent of Hispanic men and 1.2 percent of white men in the same age group were in prison.” While it may be true that there actually are more black men in prison than college, just barely, its not true that black men are more likely to go to prison than University(actually the statistics don’t take account of the number of black men who have gone to prison and to University, which are not necessarily mutually exclusive. Perhaps black men are likely to go to University and then go to prison or vice-versa. Either way the statistic is bunk. )
What is most tragic is that it becomes a self fulfilling prophecy. Some black person reads this statistic and says “I can’t succeed, I am destined for prison.” Surely once someone convinces themselves they are a failure and destined for a life behind bars, it is only a matter of time. It may only take the chance meeting with a few will meaning white academics who explain to blacks that “the cards are stacked against you, the system is rigged, you can’t succeed because of your race” to ensure their belief in their second class victimized status.
Mr. Dominic Herrera cannot succeed because he has convinced himself he is a second rate person who will forever be punished for his ‘dark skin.’ But one might wonder at the result should he move to live in a country where dark skinned people were the majority. Then what would be the excuse for his failure? Surely then it would be globalization, the long arm of the white man reaching out to suppress him wherever he goes.
Historically tenacious minorities have succeeded far beyond the expectations given them by the Anglo majority of 19th century America. Again and again underestimated minorities have been washed ashore in the United States and accomplished far beyond what they could have done in their former countries. Tragically after 200 years of American independence that tide of successful minorities began to shift. The belief in the ideology of the victim which began to be preached in the 1960s and 1970s and is now malignant in American society has resulted in a generation of failure and will only continue to create more and more American failures as time goes on. For every minority and white person who embraces the new eugenics of race based determinations of success, it is merely another tragic path to the dregs of American society.

My Chinese child
Seth J. Frantzman
September 29th, 2007

Why do Western couples adopt Asian children? Does it say something about Western culture that they do this, does it say something about Asians that they give their children up for adoption and if so, does it say something about racism and slavery in today’s society? Is this a modern day sale of children, and why is China limiting births while Islam is increasing them? What would a white couple say if they were in Asia and saw a Chinese family with a white child? More importantly, why can’t western women have enough children naturally? What does that say about the ‘I love myself’ society?
One cannot say whether it is improper for people to adopt children that are not of the same race, culture or religion of the parents. But one can say that 98% of such adoptions occur between western white people adopting children from non-western, usually Asian countries. Sometime it takes the form of the adoption of African children, such as was the case with Madonna. Why does this happen? It does not go the other way around. Even the wealthiest Asians and Africans do not adopt children from the west. Thabo Mbeki or Lee Kuan Hew, or Jackie Chan do not have little kids whose parents were named Chris and Thom and Erin. Surely their wealth would allow them to adopt the children of poor white folks. But they resist the inclination to do so. Why? Don’t they also feel the need to have a child from another culture?
The Romans and Soviets adopted children. Adoption is not a western phenomenon. However its current form is. In the old days people adopted the children of parents who died or perhaps could not afford to feed the children. Adoption was common among the Soviet elites in the 1920s because so many comrades had been lost in the Civil War. But the modern western phenomenon of adopting children because western women are either unwilling or unable to have children or because the family feels it is proper to adopt unwanted children is a phenomenon.
It seems there is something decidedly paternalistic and racist in the idea that one ‘should’ adopt a non-western child. It is sort of a strange twisted form of manifest destiny. We can’t go colonize some society so lets bring their children here. We desire a ‘multi-ethnic’ and ‘diverse’ society so we should bring in children that don’t look like us in order to achieve this. Forget the fact that those kids will merely look different, their culture will be ours and in their mannerism and speech they will be indistinguishable to their peers. Only in that all important western idea of ‘race’ will they differ. There must be nothing more pleasing than bringing in Asian and black children, making them ape western culture through their upbringing, and then saying ‘look at my diverse family.’ But it is a fake diversity, like all diversity in the west. It is the fake diversity that always pretends that diversity can be found in a postcard, in counting the number of black and brown and white and yellow faces and saying ‘look diversity.’ It is precisely the opposite of honest diversity and tolerance and coexistence where people are actually diverse based on their different culture and diets and languages and religions and upbringing and ideology and class. Western diversity, the diversity of the adopted children, is like Islamic diversity, everyone looks different but they all act the same way. That’s a dangerous hypocritical diversity. It also says much about a culture that can no longer perpetuate itself through childbirth.

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