In answer to the Jan. 24 lettter, “Leave Stereotypes of Large Families at Home,” [Xpress], I believe the man who said of your six children, “What, one wasn’t enough?” is absolutely right. We have almost 8 billion people on this planet, when most evidence points to 2 billion to be the safest amount (Countdown by Alan Weisman, 2013).
If you feel this man was not sensitive to you, as an educated woman, you should be sensitive to the fact that our planet has too many people and is still continuing to grow. However, you say you “don’t care because you’re busy raising children.” No one insulted you — the man was remonstrating with you.
We add almost 1 million babies to our Earth every two days. We are adding a billion people to our overcrowded planet every dozen years! Yes, we need to think of the number of children we have and realize that two children are the “zero population” point: meaning, two children are replacement level —one child for the father and one for the mother.
But in these crowded times, even two are too many. Adults who marry should strive to lower this birth rate by having either one child or having none (as I have). Don’t worry, children are not necessarily the “fulfillment” that you need in your lives. There are many other fulfillments in life — reading, yoga, hobbies, greater education, a new skill, running, walking, community or public service, etc.
I heard our House Speaker actually say that we should have more children: This ignorant and hidebound remark probably comes from the fact that more humans in the U.S. means more consumers buying brainless items like fidget spinners that are headed for the landfills. Our consumer society is not sustainable, nor is our population. Yes, U.S. growth has slowed, but we still have more population every year because of immigration, etc.
Smaller numbers over time would make for less congested streets, rush hours, lines at airports, traffic. Our lives would be so much simpler and less complicated. Africa is expected to double by 2050 (Niger to triple), and you may say this is their problem — but the vast pools of jobless young people could be set on the migration trail to Europe or the U.S. or into the hands of Islamic extremists like Boko Haram. Massive population growth is everyone’s problem.
— Sharon Hauch