Skip to comments.Wanted by the Fertility Police
Posted on 10/24/2001 9:08:40 PM PDT by Brian Kopp DPM
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See my post # 60
I have news for you. This has been going on along time. I was born in the 1960's and come from a family a five children. I distinctly remember this type of reaction whenever we all went out together.
The concept of poverty versus overpopulation needs close scrutiny. Poverty can be defined as too many people for the resources available in a geographic region. When we see humans living in poverty, we feel a certain solidarity with them. Our consciences tell us of our duty to help them out of their misery with food, shelter, infrastructure, and the means to develop their economy. [remember the beatitudes, and Christ's criteria for the last judgement, i.e., when did we see you hungry and feed you, see you naked and cloth you]
Remember that verbal engineering always precedes social engineering. By calling poverty by a new name, "overpopulation," we remove the burden for their suffering from our conscience. No longer do we feel the need to feed them. We now can say, "It's your fault. If you'd just stop making babies, you wouldn't be living in poverty. Your suffering is your own creation." So instead of corn meal, we ship them condoms. Instead of antibiotics, we send them IUDs. Instead of the blessing infrastructure would bring, we send the curse of infertility.
I was in love with a wonderful woman, married, gainfully employed and paid my own way so whose business is it? Now my wife is 31 but looks 24 and when she goes out with the kids people whisper, "how old do you think she was when she started having kids?"
It is amazing how in a couple of generations children can go from being a blessing to being a social embarassment.
The only qualification I will add to that is that the women who chose to do so came from fairly well-off backgrounds, and could expect some financial help from their parents.
It's a lot harder for a woman to make that decision if she or her husband have large student loans upon graduation.
For those families which fit your above description, we are in complete agreement. There are, however, plenty of large families in this country which do wind up leeching off other taxpayers. Some happen to be Christian (of one variety or another), and some are of other religions. Their religion is totally irrelevant to those of us taxpayers who are victimized by having our money siphoned off to support their large families. I don't think it's unreasonable for people in this country who have few (or no) children to react with skepticism to those with lots of children, given the typical high cost of raising children. It is certainly not unreasonable to recite the pro forma proviso that large families are fine only so long as the parents can afford it and aren't trying to make others pay for their preferences.
As I previously indicated, I do not believe that "overpopulation" per se causes poverty. In a free society with a free market, having more people generally means more brainpower and more technological progress and greater production and a steady increase in the average standard of living. Which means less overall poverty.
That being said, the consequences for a specific family of having more children might very well turn out to be poverty. It depends on the skills and circumstances of the parents. If they do not have the income to feed or care for the children they already have, and yet they continue to have more children, then they are indeed responsible for their own (and their children's) subsequent poverty. And no, that is not my fault, that is their fault. In that case their suffering is their own creation. And I certainly do not feel the need to feed them.
Having two children you find it is easier than having just one. You are a little busier. You get nothing but smiles as you announce that you have two and if you happen to have a boy and a girl you have reached perfection in the eyes of the world.
Having three children you find out that having three gives you a sense of what a family really feels like. In the eyes of the world you are still close to that state of perfection and you will be humored for your 'mistake'. Yes, you know what causes that.
Having four children you are a little busier than when you had three, but when everyone is at the kitchen table eating breakfast you say to yourself, "I can't believe I have four kids." And you smile. This is also where you begin to try the patience of your family, friends and acquantences who think you are nuts. Fending off the scoffers by this point just becomes a point of irritation.
Having five children, you take on the feeling, "Well, what's one more." You are already doing the work. What is an extra bed or pair of shoes? By this point, you are immune to the naysayers.
Having six children, well what's one more?
When my husband's aunt had 5 or 6 of her eventual 13, a lady asked her if she had ever heard of Planned Parenthood. His aunt just looked at the rude lady and replied, "Yeah, I'm the president." :-)