In the 70s, then-Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew introduced the “Stop-At-Two” policy to curb our population growth. The buzzwords then were “Family Planning” and “Two Is Enough”.
The policy was so clinically effective in its application and implementation that by the 80s, Singapore’s falling birth rate was in the danger zone. None of the Members of Parliament at that time sounded any alarms about the danger and all apparently supported the birth control policy. The local state-controlled media went along for the ride, much as it is today.
Yet, instead of a total reversal of the policy when it became clear that it was having adverse consequences, MM Lee introduced another ill-fated idea – the infamous “Graduate Mothers Policy”.
e government acted to give preferential school admission to children whose mothers were university graduates, while offering grants of S$10,000 to less educated women who agreed to be sterilized after the birth of their second child. The government also established a Social Development Unit to act as matchmaker for unmarried university graduates. The policies, especially those affecting placement of children in the highly competitive Singapore schools, proved controversial and generally unpopular.”
In 1985, the highly unpopular policy was abolished as it was not achieving its aims of having graduate mothers produce more babies. It was only in 1987 that the Stop-At-Two policy was abandoned entirely. By then, Singapore’s birth rate had run into serious problems – we were not replacing ourselves at an appropriate rate.
Population control revisited
30 years later, the same man who was responsible for the “Stop At Two” policy in the 70s, is now telling us that the government “accept only immigrants who increase the average level of competence of Singaporeans” – and doing so to the tune of 1.68 million foreigners presently on our tiny island, in a population of 3.2 million Singaporeans.
This is in response to Singapore’s birth rate problem – it continues to fall, despite government incentives to induce Singaporeans to have children.
Do we really want to follow in Singapore’s footsteps?
Read more here.