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China changes child policy again amid population struggle

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The Chinese government announced Monday that it will grant married couples the ability to have up to three children, an upgrade from the 2016 two-child policy. However, according to Weibo, Chinese Twitter, some aren’t anticipating following the policy according to a report by Quartz.

In the announcement via Weibo, the government claimed the new policy would “improve the structure of China’s population, implement the national strategy of actively responding to the aging population, and maintaining China’s human resource advantages.” One of the top comments under the announcement was simply “Bah!” It had nearly 80,000 likes.

“Honestly, what people need are substantial benefits such as subsidies [for having children],” one Weibo user wrote, “not those superficial encouragements. People don’t want to have children not because the absence of a three-children policy, but because we can’t afford it.”

Another user suggested what would actually help would be “the most fundamental maternity welfare and solve the unfair treatment women face at the workplace for giving birth.” Both comments vanished but not before they received hundreds of thousands of likes.

Author of “The Coming Collapse of China” Gordon Chang says that there’s a movement behind the “mood of pessimism throughout Chinese society, especially among the young.” He explained the movement in a statement to this reporter.

“The ‘lie-down movement,’ which is sweeping China’s youth, reflects a loss of energy and enthusiasm across the country,” Chang said. “There are many reasons for lying down, but [Xi Jinping’s] tightening of controls over daily life plus his shutting out of foreign influences add to a sense of helplessness and powerlessness.”

So, Chinese people are not wanting to bring a child into a world where they have no control. Chang predicts that the people are discouraged enough to not have a child at all, let alone three.

You can follow Jenny Goldsberry on Twitter @jennyjournalism.

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The Tate Brothers and Associates Face Human Trafficking Charges in Romania

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In a recent development, the Tate brothers, Andrew and Tristan, along with two associates, find themselves at the center of a high-profile case involving human trafficking allegations.

The charges leveled against them indicate the formation of an organized criminal group in 2021 with the intent to carry out human trafficking operations not only in Romania but also in the United States and the United Kingdom, according to the BBC.

The investigation, which led to their arrest in December last year, has culminated in an indictment filed with the Bucharest court. According to the indictment, the Tate brothers are accused of luring their victims with false promises of love and marriage. Seven individuals have been identified as alleged victims, who were later coerced and subjected to a harrowing ordeal.

Prosecutors contend that the victims were taken to locations in Ilfov county, Romania, where they faced constant surveillance, intimidation, and control. The defendants allegedly forced the victims into debt and coerced them into participating in pornographic activities, with the explicit material subsequently shared on social media platforms. Shockingly, one of the defendants is accused of raping a woman on two occasions in March 2022, further amplifying the gravity of the charges.

While the trial is not expected to commence immediately, as a Romanian judge is granted 60 days to inspect the case files, it is anticipated to be a protracted legal battle. The complexity of the case and the severity of the charges will undoubtedly result in a lengthy trial process, with several years potentially passing before a verdict is reached.

Representatives for the Tate brothers released a statement acknowledging the unsurprising nature of the news but maintaining their belief in their innocence.

As reported by the BBC, the Tate brothers media team stared, “While this news is undoubtedly predictable, we embrace the opportunity it presents to demonstrate their innocence and vindicate their reputation.”

They expressed their eagerness to present a comprehensive body of evidence meticulously collected over time, which they believe will substantiate their claims of innocence and restore their tarnished reputation.

However, it should be noted that additional charges, such as money laundering and trafficking of minors, are still under investigation. If evidence is uncovered to support these allegations, a separate indictment could be filed, further complicating the legal proceedings for the defendants.

Andrew Tate, who gained notoriety through his participation in the reality television show Big Brother, has a controversial past, having been removed from the show in 2016 following a video that appeared to depict him assaulting a woman.

Despite subsequent bans on social media platforms due to his contentious statements, he has managed to amass a following, particularly among young men, by promoting an ostentatious and hyper-masculine lifestyle.

As the case unfolds, public attention will undoubtedly be drawn to the trial, with many eagerly awaiting the outcome and hoping for justice to be served for the alleged victims. The complex web of charges and the high-profile nature of the defendants ensure that this trial will be closely monitored and scrutinized by the media and the public alike.

Follow Alexander Carter on Twitter @AlexCarterDC for more!

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