Prefer Fem Babes?

People often talk as if they are extremely concerned about health, and would give up a great deal of everything else to get just a bit more health.  “When you’ve got your health, you’ve got just about everything.” This sort of justification is often offered for spending vast sums on apparently ineffective end-of-life medicine.

So I think it important to ponder our strong disinterest in big ways we could improve health.  For example, women very consistently live longer than men.  In the US, Australia, Japan, Spain, etc. they live 4-7 years longer; studies that control for many other factors typically find males dying about twice as often.

Yet we see almost no interest in preferring female children on the basis that they will live longer.  We see parents prefer to gender balance their kids, and in some cultures parents prefer males.  Do parents not care how long their kids live, do they think male lives are worth more per year, to compensate for fewer years, or what?

See also Bryan on gender imbalances less harmful than supposed.

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