Letters to the Editor, September 2022
Published: September 19, 2022
As a woman now in her 60s, I look back and reflect on my life and the choices I have made. The biggest choice was whether or not to have children.
At the age of 25, I made the conscious decision not to, and every day I am grateful I had the help and support I needed. I feel that, as a society, we have a moral and spiritual urgency to speak out about the issues surrounding overpopulation, to help break down the stigmas and taboos that still keep this too much in the shadows. Our individual and collective efforts are all a precious gift to Mother Earth.
World food production is increasing, but is losing ground in the race with hunger. In nature, every species in a favorable environment grows until its death rate matches its birth rate. The human species is the first to intellectually understand environmental carrying capacity—we are the first to have a choice. We can choose a birth rate solution rather than a death rate solution as our population nears its carrying capacity.
Of course, the earth’s human carrying capacity is changing due to changing technology. Yet nature is signaling that we are getting close to limits and that we are reducing the carrying capacity of the earth for non-human life. I fear the human population will continue to grow until nature imposes death rate solutions on us and our growth leads to the extinction of many other species. By contrast, the birth rate solution could lead to a healthy and well-fed human population in harmony and balance with the rest of our natural world. Why is this alternative not part of stories about hunger and climate change?
Robert W. Easton
That your organization has an important, lifesaving purpose I have no doubt. Unfortunately, there is an entire world system that doesn’t want you to succeed. Leaders want larger bases, corporations want more consumers, religions want more church members, etc. I doubt there are more than a few, if any, large entities that rely on people that would like to see populations shrink. I base that on the fact that virtually no large-scale and influential body is picking up the mantra. None of this or any country’s political leaders seem to want to promote it vigorously and openly. Never see anything on the mainstream media. I am of the belief that unless we can get this idea first and foremost on the minds of every person on this planet, achieving your goals in a meaningful and lasting way cannot occur. I donate to your organization, but I’m not hopeful.
Regarding our response to the Jerusalem Demsas article “The People Who Hate People,” published in The Atlantic in May:
Being concerned about the carrying capacity of the earth and the compromises and changes required due to increases in population does not make either a person or an organization revisionist, conservative, anti-reform, or anti-progress. It marks them as thoughtful and concerned, interested in facts rather than unsupported emotional suppositions.
We can all argue about who should occupy which berths on the Titanic, but not about going full speed ahead into a rapidly developing iceberg field.