I have a casual acquaintance who is publicly outspoken on the problems facing this planet in general and humanity in particular. I agree with his conclusions and share his pessimism for the future, that tempers my daily activities. It also makes me appreciate my good fortune at not only being me, but having lived through one of the only periods in the history of humans in which egalitarianism and social welfare were considered essential to the running of a just and fair society. Those days are already gone, unfortunately, and we rush headlong towards…
It surprised me, therefore, to hear from him that, at the age of thirty-two and happily married, he decided to get a little fitter and lose excess flab because he had decided to breed. To have children. Therefore he had to make an effort to live long enough to see them independent.
What about the impending catastrophe? Does he not worry that he’s bringing children into a world running out of air, water and food? A world already enmeshed in warfare that is only going to get worse? A world where the rich are getting obscenely richer while the poor are not only getting poorer, but increasing in numbers?
We saw on TV the other night a woman who had endured seven years of drought in East Africa—along with thousands of others, existing on handouts, always on the brink of starvation in the most miserable circumstances imaginable. During this time that one woman had added three children to the problem. Is this a sane act? Am I wrong to think people should stop breeding until things improve because it is cruel to bring children into such a world?