The biggest problem facing humanity today is overpopulation, and we’ve been told that the heart of the problem is the extremely high birthrates in third world countries. The UN’s most recent world population projection provides a list of these countries. But which third world countries are being discussed? One of the names will surprise you.
No need for suspense here. The list is India, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, the United Republic of Tanzania, the United States of America (USA), Indonesia and Uganda (listed by their contribution to the total population growth).
Seeing the United States on the list was a surprise at first, but when I consider the worsening quality of education in the U.S., the U.S.’ resistance to birth control and family planning, and the domination of the U.S. media by greedy, short-sighted corporations and individuals, perhaps it’s not so surprising. What it DOES suggest is that the United States is no smarter than the other countries on the list (so much for “American Exceptionalism”), and is becoming more like the other countries on the list over time.
The United States may help create the global disasters we fear. Unfortunately, the United States is a lot wealthier and more influential than the other countries on the list, which suggests that U.S. policies and actions in the coming years will ignore the population problem and increase our risk of global catastrophe, not reduce it. Religious fundamentalism, reactionary political thinking, and political turmoil will all combine to prevent many of the most critical actions we need to take now to protect the future of our grandchildren.
We may be poor, but we still have our votes. The vast majority of Americans have seen their fortunes sinking under the weight of legislation and policy driven by the greed of the wealthiest entities in the world, corporations and billionaires. Americans are constantly driven by the media to focus on either inconsequential problems, like some people’s aversion to gay marriage, and we aren’t shown even hints that the population explosion is a causal factor behind many if not most of the problems reported every day. The reasons are complex, but they mostly add up to the wealthiest corporations and individuals making more money. There is one bit of power we each have, however, that they can’t easily take away, though conservatives keep trying in every way possible: our votes.
I urge you to vote wisely against reactionary measures that will make matters worse, even if only by distracting us from the real problem. I urge you to vote for open-minded candidates willing to discuss overpopulation and its effects, and to ask they questions in public that will force them to comment on it. I urge you to preserve the power of your vote by fighting against gerrymandering, needless identification laws, and corruption of every kind and at every level of society. If we don’t turn our attention to the population problem and demand that our representatives do also, we are leaving our descendants on a path to larger and larger disasters that many of us alive today will experience (except that we will be older and, many of us, much less able to respond effectively).
Instead of joining the Third World, the United States should be leading (as we used to) with inventions and innovations that reduce and counter the environmental damage already occurring, that reduce our national birthrate, that constantly refresh our economic prospects, and that pave a path to a sustainable (no growth) future for our descendants. You can use your vote, your intelligent brain, and your voice, to “move the needle” in a positive direction. For the good of all humanity and all life on the planet I hope and beg you to do this.
Thanks for reading. — Tim #StopHavingChildren