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Overpopulation



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Nostalgia

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Oh yes, another classic among potentially controversial topics. I'm gonna presume that anybody who's even looking at this section of the site already knows a thing or two about overpopulation and the repercussions it has in various aspects of life.

Our 7 billionth person was introduced to the world a few months back (I think early November, but I'm not 100% about that.) The reason why I happened to think of this now was because it was recently covered as a topic in my Environmental class, and we looked at some of the current situations in various places in the world. Mainly, we looked at India, Japan, the U.S., and sub-Saharan Africa. Oddly enough, China wasn't studied, but I think that its current 'growth' rate isn't as substantial as India because of the governmental actions they've taken as a means of population control. (Just a guess though, so I'm not claiming that as fact or anything.)

That said, we watched a documentary in which regular people from all 4 of these areas were interviewed to try and get an understanding of these various population-related phenomena that were prevalent in each location respectively.

First was India. A number of women who already had 6-8 children had a common problem. Apparently, in poorer areas, girls are looked as an economic burden because they are typically married off to another family and their fathers don't have them around to take care of them in their old age. So, if the wife is producing daughters, the husbands tend to keep pushing for more children until there are at least 2 sons. It sounds like an oddity, but it's shown to be a common trait and that's in part responsible for the explosion of new babies. What's even scarier is that the population already started to explode decades ago, and these large numbers of children are now entering the reproductive years, which will only cause a larger explosion by an exponential scale.

In Japan, the situation is reversed. There are so few children, that the nation's population is projected to be halved within the next fifty years if there is no significant change in this current trend. Pretty soon, they also think that 1 in 3 people in the nation will be over age 65, which in itself is also frightening. When childless women in their 20s were interviewed, a lot of them said that they're very focused on their careers and are uninterested in having children at this point in time. In the meantime, life expectancy is increasing and the birth rate is very low.

The U.S. would basically be in the same situation as Japan if not for the fact that we frequently utilize immigration for the sake of gradually increasing our numbers. So, our population is increasing, but it's not to the same extreme.

Sub-Saharan areas of Africa like Kenya are experiencing a similar situation to India in terms of view points and birth rates that result from them, but the issue is that the death rate is extremely high from the spread of HIV-AIDS and other diseases. So, the growth isn't quite as one-sided. Another problem with this scenario is that the diseases kill off mainly young adults, leaving behind mostly children and the elderly, both of whom need to be cared for by the people who are dying off the fastest.

With some of that background information, I was curious to see what others think about population control. Obviously, there is a correlation between stabilizing/declining populations of developed nations (seeing as how special circumstances keep the U.S. from being like Japan), and exponentially increasing populations of developing nations. Presumably, the link between them is the level of quality education that people are receiving.

On a bit of a tangent, in noticing that more education tends to lead to slower population growth (if it grows at all), I'm wondering what it has to say about us psychologically. Education typically leads to success, and by these current standings, successful people are less inclined to have as many children, so I'm curious if it shows how selfish we truly are.

Sorry for the lengthy post, but it's one of my favorite environmental topics (probably the only one besides energy that doesn't bore the shit out of me.)
 
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Sean

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Once I get really high I'll come back and discuss everything I know about this. Cause me and my friends talk about this everyday
 

JustSnilloc

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I personally think that women need to have their tubes tied after having a child for the next several years... That way the population drops and life gets better for everyone... You know the black plague? Yeah, sure that killed a bunch of people, but later it made life great because the population dropped and life was easier because of such...

"But... what if I want more than 1 child?"

- ADOPT, seriously people want to have 10,000 babies and there are so many kids that don't have good homes that could be adopted... Realistically, people nowadays should have no more than 2 children (outside triplets, quadruplets, etc) and if they do desire more, then they need to adopt

People need to stop having sex, or stop their personal ability to reproduce... The world can only get worse by people having so many kids
 

Nostalgia

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The only problem is that people will never be willing to do that on their own. Even if you wanna make the argument that the government can impose a restriction on it of some sort, people will see it as an infringement on their rights. I think the best approach is to convince people with the one thing that can change anyone's mind. Money. I mean specifically tax incentives. Raise taxes for people who decide to have more children, and give tax breaks to anyone who has under 2. 2 is the neutral number at which taxes would be unchanged because that's the number of children it takes to reimburse a parental unit of a mother and father. Granted, this would probably be the best approach for developed nations that don't have this much of a problem with population control, but even the U.S.'s growth rate is a bit high. It's mainly based on immigration, but those immigrants and the natives will eventually reproduce as well, and gradually climbing our way into 400 million is not something to be proud of.

As for developing nations, what they really need is education. They need to learn how to break away from these old traditions that don't recognize women as capable people. If they can do so much as that, they'll lessen a need to expand their offspring to monstrous numbers. Now, the immediate course of action is to try and work on finding incentives for the people of poorer areas to completely halt reproduction altogether. But ultimately, the biggest target are the current Indian children. If they can be persuaded to have less than 2 children on average in the future, the population will stabilize and eventually decline.

Japan's another story. What they really need is to encourage more immigration, but apparently they're not as fond of it as the U.S. because they like to keep the population mainly Japanese, which is understandable, but they also have to realize what's at stake.
 

Sean

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Has anyone heard of the Georgia Guidestones?
 

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Cosmic+Amarna

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Has anyone heard of the Georgia Guidestones?
Yes.

And yes population is indeed a big issue that poses threat to us. There is a lot people need to do to alleviate this issue. But it does need serious thoughts from everyone regarding it. People need to be aware of it first, otherwise they will do what almost ever other person does, and ignores responsibility. But yes we need to get real about this.
 

Nostalgia

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And the way to do that is to educate the younger generation because adults are already a lost cause. They're pretty much set in their ways. It's kinda like racism. To completely eliminate it, we need to educate kids and put a large emphasis on it because someone who grew up as a racist will most likely always be one.

In this particular case, if kids in school are taught that it isn't beneficial to produce a giant litter, they might actually listen because they're still in that unbiased and impartial stage of life.
 

Johnny Stooge

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I personally think that women need to have their tubes tied after having a child for the next several years... That way the population drops and life gets better for everyone... You know the black plague? Yeah, sure that killed a bunch of people, but later it made life great because the population dropped and life was easier because of such...
Overpopulation is one thing.

But suggesting that we limit every couple to one child, that for every two adults we replace them with one child, is just as bad. You end up with an ageing population, a serious problem that most Western countries are facing now, and that puts HUGE burdens on welfare, healthcare and the labour force.

You think you can fix the world's problems with your ideas but you really, really can't. Problems and their solutions are not and simply cannot be so black and white.
 

Nostalgia

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Overpopulation is one thing.

But suggesting that we limit every couple to one child, that for every two adults we replace them with one child, is just as bad. You end up with an ageing population, a serious problem that most Western countries are facing now, and that puts HUGE burdens on welfare, healthcare and the labour force.

You think you can fix the world's problems with your ideas but you really, really can't. Problems and their solutions are not and simply cannot be so black and white.

I agree. Rather than reduce the birth rate, it's better to stabilize it with 2 children per parental unit for reimbursement and to let the death rate exceed it.
 

JustSnilloc

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Overpopulation is one thing.

But suggesting that we limit every couple to one child, that for every two adults we replace them with one child, is just as bad. You end up with an ageing population, a serious problem that most Western countries are facing now, and that puts HUGE burdens on welfare, healthcare and the labour force.

You think you can fix the world's problems with your ideas but you really, really can't. Problems and their solutions are not and simply cannot be so black and white.

True... That'd probably work out better, it's just something that can easily be done during child birth (tied tubes) and it'd help. But would a lessened number of people available to work be such a bad thing? It's pretty kupoing hard to get a job nowadays because there are so many people wanting to do it... The truth is, we don't have enough for as many people as we have. Either the rich give back some, or we have less people, it's the only way to solve the issue

Grant you, the drasticness of how many people less we have in the coming years could go helpful, and it could go harmful... It just depends on how it's done, because like you said, it's not just black and white, and there is no perfect clear cut solution
 

Vayne Mechanics

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I personally think that women need to have their tubes tied after having a child for the next several years... That way the population drops and life gets better for everyone... You know the black plague? Yeah, sure that killed a bunch of people, but later it made life great because the population dropped and life was easier because of such...
Mind if I cut your dick off so you can't use it anymore after you have a child? Men are more likely to actively pursue multiple sex partners than women. If you're going to suggest something, it should probably be with the male reproductive system.

An alternative: Crushing your testicles.
 
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I'm curious as to how those of you who think limiting couples to X children would do that. (Read a book series about that, once. That was the antagonist's move, but mostly because they were doing a lot of other bad things like ordering people grow certain crops where they live despite not having the right soil or climate for it, and not paying enough attention to why agricultural pursuits should be focused on rather than the rich people getting their way, blah, blah, blah)

Anyways, what I'm wondering is, considering the divorce rate and the number of children born outside of wedlock, would you limit it by couple? So if they break up and got with someone else they could start over with children? Or by woman? Which means the guys could keep having as many kids as they want. Or what? :3

:d Overpopulation is a big problem, but I don't know how it should be fixed.

BTW, it's still possible to have a baby with your tubes tied(seen it happen), and I don't see how women should be altered while men get off with nothing, free to go have more children. :>
 

Vayne Mechanics

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I think we should start 'removing' less-than-average-intelligent people starting with JustSnilloc.
 

Alaude Drenxta

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Men are more likely to actively pursue multiple sex partners than women.

That's not only untrue, but heavily biased and discriminatory, and to be honest quite offensive.

Enacting forced birth control isn't answer. The best we can hope for without being dictatorial is to educate the parents of the future and instill a sense of responsibility to the world they will inherit.
 
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That's not only untrue, but heavily biased and discriminatory, and to be honest quite offensive.
I'll agree that it's not true, but physically thinking, it's more possible for males to make babies faster than females. By which I mean, only one egg is going to be fertilized and grow, inside one woman by one sperm cell. Males have more sperm to spread and can impregnate any number of woman. I'm not saying they will, I'm saying it's more possible, I think. I'm probably wrong, though, I admit to hardly knowing anything.

No forced birth control law is going to fix it, though, I agree. A lot of people aren't going to take responsibility, though, so to speak. Maybe adoption should be more encouraged or something...?

Also, since I'm pretty sure most babies aren't planned(rape, lack of proctection, whatever,) simply educating people may or may not work... But, hey, I'm still probably wrong. :3
 
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