Letters to the Editor

Population crunch

July 30, 2008


To the editor:

This is in response to the July 26 Roush letter. I completely disagree with her "be fruitful and multiply" mentality. She and the pope are out of contact with reality. Her criticism of birth control is illogical. China has a population of 1.3 billion and had to limit the number of children due to necessity and inability to feed the population.

Allow me to give some statistics. World population is now 6.6 billion and will be 9 billion by 2042. Sixteen thousand children die of starvation or related causes every day. Population is growing faster than the food supply. In the U.S., in 2006, 3.5 million lived in households considered food-insecure. How many more people does she want in this world? Is it humane to see hungry children?

I also disagree on her statements about how men don't respect women using contraceptives and use them as instruments of selfish enjoyment. Women desire sexual enjoyment as much as men. A good sexual appetite is healthy for any relationship. She seems to think sex should only be used for reproduction. Also her natural method of avoiding pregnancy is just a glorified rhythm method and far from a satisfactory method of birth control!

Population control is essential if this world is going to be able to support itself in the future. People need to start thinking more realistically about how many humans this earth can support and how it everyone's responsibility to make the best choice.

Craig Tucker and Judy Northway,



JayCat_67 9 years, 10 months ago

"Is it better risk starvation or never be born at all? As a person who is a third child, I say it's better to risk starvation. Bring it on!!"Now all we need to do is find someone who was never born and you two can compare notes...

acoupstick 9 years, 10 months ago

ZPG should be a global goal that starts with demanding equality for women in all societies, in all cultures. When woman have access to education, reproductive freedom, and partipation in the workforce, populations will cease to increase at current levels. Unfortunately, the pace of education and progressive views toward women has not equaled the pace of medical advances in the third world. Overpopulation is putting environmental, economic, and social strain on developing countries. The industrial world needs to stop worrying about appearing hypocrytical or "racist" and push for universal education, literacy, and women's suffrage.

altarego 9 years, 10 months ago

There is only one option for those concerned with over-population that carries a trace of integrity.

ASBESTOS 9 years, 10 months ago

Mexico had a population of 28 million in the 1970s, and the U.S. at that time had about 180 million. Just 30 some years later Mexico has a population of 107 million, with an additional 28 million citizens in the United States, and the United States went to 330 million, much of that increas from immigration both legal and illegal.Check out the ;immigration gumballs" video on Youtube.comhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n7WJeqxuOfQpopulation is alreadyout of control in India and China where they only allow one offspring per family. The United States will have population problems, as is Europe with the massive immigration both ilelgal and legal.Yes population is a problem with the use of resources, and comption of resources.Water, energy, oil, and space, are all impacted with population expolsions, and with population increases you will have more vicious and widespread violent crime.IF you are concerned about global climate change, population pressure is central. Changing lightbulbs and riding a bicycle to work may make you feel good, however, excess humans using up more energy will add more greenhouse gases.That is why CHINA and INDIA are the problems with Global climatic change.

janeyb 9 years, 10 months ago

2007 surpassed the previous record high birth year 1957. Reasons include more age 40+ women having babies, medical advances helping couples previously unable to conceive, and, numero uno, hispanic women.

acoupstick 9 years, 10 months ago

"We mustn't allow reality to interfere with doomsday predictions."The reality is that China has their pop. growth under control and that India will likely follow in the next decade. Those countries already have immense populations that will push the worlds resources past their limits. That is saying nothing of the 20 or so failing or failed states whose populations are poised to increase past sustainability. While "doomsday predictions" are often worst case scenarios presented as inevitability, many are logically plausable and deserve serious attention. Many of the earth's resources are finite and are in jeopardy due to inattention, mismanagement and the burden of overpopulation.

acoupstick 9 years, 10 months ago

Simon-Ehlrich waged on the price of a few select metals, not essential resources such as topsoil, arable land, healthy forests, species diversity, lumber, ground water, potable water, etc. To deny that these resources are already under pressure or that unchecked population growth will further jeopardize these resources is ignorant and naive. I don't believe in "Chicken Little"-ism. I believe in problems and solutions. I also believe that as Americans in general and Midwesterners specifically, we are insulated from many of the problems faced elsewhere. Given the recent weather it's hard for us to imagine, for instance, that the Ogallala Aquifer is being depleted and that we may in the future be facing a shortage of fresh water for agriculture and for drinking.

BigPrune 9 years, 10 months ago

I wonder who will pay for the LTE's social security when they retire because there won't be enough young people to pick up the tab?I am a proud contributor to the population of the planet. Hopefully it won't be my kids footing THEIR bill.

tangential_reasoners_anonymous 9 years, 10 months ago

notnowdear: "Let's not push the pretense that marriage is a solid institution. The marriage convention, as we know it, is undoubtedly dying.""Waning."Like the moon.

jmadison 9 years, 10 months ago

Any projections of future population growth should be tempered with the realization that a respiratory borne viral pandemic could wipe out a major portion of the earth's population. Our current health delivery system could not cope with a pandemic-there aren't enough ventilators or ICU beds to take care of a big jump in critically ill patients. Its been about 90 years since the last major flu pandemic, but viral infections are still not treated with satisfactory results.

smarty_pants 9 years, 10 months ago

Malthus was right, and we need a global pandemic or a few more large-scale natural disasters to thin out the population.

acoupstick 9 years, 10 months ago

States should not directly limit reproductive freedom. The best way is for people to voluntarily limit the number of children that they have and educating and allow women to work is a start.

altarego 9 years, 10 months ago

"Many of the earth's resources are finite and are in jeopardy due to inattention, mismanagement and the burden of overpopulation."That's one way of putting it. Here's another way: We are a cancer upon this orb.It is not a question of if we will populate beyond sustainability, but when. No matter how resilient we are, the planet will survive us.What I enjoy most is the level of arrogance that is blind to the fundamental irony in any discussion of population control. That is, If you can articulate the problem, other than posthumously, you are part of it.Tricky stuff.

tangential_reasoners_anonymous 9 years, 10 months ago

altarego: "That's one way of putting it. Here's another way:We are a cancer upon this orb."I'm a scorpio... rising!

Brent Garner 9 years, 10 months ago

Regarding the referenced China One Child Policy.If you do an online search of the demographic impacts of China's one child policy you can find numerous articles all of which point up several negative aspects of China's efforts at population control. One of the most egregous has been a gender imbalance in China. In other words, given the Chinese preference for a male heir, female children are often aborted or left to die so that the family can try again for a male heir. This has resulted, in many areas of China in a imbalance between male and female births approaching 30% (1.3 males for every 1 female born). This has, in turn led to other problems. There is a rising incidence of the criminal activity of trafficking in women as brides. These women are, in many cases, kidnapped and sold as brides to Chinese men who cannot find available Chinese women to marry. According to the reports I read these "involuntary brides" are usually from poor Chinese families, North Korea, or elsewhere in Asia to include Vietnam. Additionally, the Chinese are facing a serious problem as their population ages. If you think the imbalance between young and old is bad here, consider this. It is referred to as the 4-2-1 problem. A Chinese child today, may well find himself or herself responsible for the care of their parents (mom and dad--the 2 in the 4-2-1) and 4 grandparents. And we think we have a problem with a growing imbalance between social security receipients and those paying into the system.These are but two of the unintended consequences of China's "vaunted" one child policy.

jaywalker 9 years, 10 months ago

'In the U.S., in 2006, 3.5 million lived in households considered food-insecure. How many more people does she want in this world? Is it humane to see hungry children?'What does this have to do with overpopulation or kids starving to death due to lack of food? Does anyone think someone's starving in this country because there's not enough food? " The "have more babies" sentiment is more of a GOP agenda to keep people poor and reliant on religion, to keep them struggling and stupid."Brilliant. And by that, I mean dumbest statement of the day.

smarty_pants 9 years, 10 months ago

"The reality is that China has their pop. growth under control and that India will likely follow in the next decade."Not exactly. China's one-child policy has created a very unbalanced population. Take a look. A healthy population should look like a pyramid: http://www.census.gov/ipc/www/idb/pyramids.html

David Roberts 9 years, 10 months ago

I understand that the overall population of the earth is increasing; however, if the Demographic-Economic Paradox has any validity, we should see third world nations' birth rates decrease as their standard of living rises. Newsweek's recent cover story "The Post-American World" suggests that the rest of the world is catching up to the US--becoming more middle class-- but the jury is still out on how that will impact fertility.

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