Re: Don’t Worry About Global Population Collapse
Written by Olivia Nater | Published: October 2, 2023
Bloomberg recently published a welcome voice of reason on the “baby bust” rhetoric. We responded with a letter to the editor which we are featuring here as Bloomberg did not publish it.
We encourage all our members and supporters to make their voices heard! See our media guide for advice on how to do that.
To the Editor:
Re: “Don’t Worry About Global Population Collapse” (September 30):
How refreshing to come across F.D. Flam’s pushback against widespread population collapse fearmongering! Media stories on declining birth rates tend to be misleading, often giving the impression that the human species is on the verge of extinction. This is completely absurd considering the UN Population Division projects our population to exceed 10 billion in the 2080s, with no foreseeable decline this century. The “baby bust” rhetoric also risks fueling coercive pronatalism, whereby women are forced into pregnancy and giving birth to boost population growth. This is already happening in some countries with authoritarian regimes.
As Ms. Flam points out, the trend towards smaller families is a result of women’s empowerment and represents a welcome and necessary transition to a sustainable future. Regarding the socioeconomic challenges presented by population aging, Ms. Flam is absolutely right to emphasize the need to prioritize the people here today. Pushing for more babies while an estimated 333 million children are growing up in extreme poverty is deeply unethical. There is no better way to build a thriving society and economy than to invest in the health, education and well-being of those alive now.