Monday, October 15, 2007

Blog Action Day: Save the Earth-Don't Have Kids

Bloggers Unite - Blog Action Day

Thanks to my blogpal Sciencewoman, I was alerted to Blog Action Day's topic: the environment.

As I started to write a comment on her post, I realized I had a lot more to say than could appropriately be considered a comment. Plus, my comment may have come off as a bit snarky.

So here goes. I have some opinions about how best to help the environment through small actions, but I also have a big one in particular that I haven't talked about very much. It's not bound to be a popular one, but I think it is the morally right decision to make. It's the issue of having kids - reproducing.

One of the best things you can do to reduce your personal impact on the environment is to not have kids. If you make the choice to not reproduce, you won't create a kid who grows up in this throw away American culture. Americans burn through the most natural resources of any group of people in the world. Why would you want to add another one to the planet? It's selfish.

Think of all of the stuff you buy and then throw away when you have kids. Thousands of diapers. Toys, clothes, bedding, bottles, etc etc. Then there's all of the extra driving you will do to cart them to and fro.

You are not off the hook if you adopt from another country. You're still raising the little one in this consumer culture. Sure, you can do your best to instill your values, but even if your child grows up to consume less than you do, you have still added another resource consumer to the planet when you didn't have to.

There is no way you can produce a child and have no added strain on the environment.

I don't blame anyone for wanting to have kids. As an evolutionary psychologist I understand the fundamental drive to reproduce. But we are not solely creatures of blind desire, we can make choices that aren't in the best interest of our genes.

I'm not the only one who thinks Having A Child - Even One - Is Environmentally Destructive and there are certainly people who passionately and vehemently disagree with this position, as can be seen here.


Simply Wired said...

Ha. This is one of the most interesting posts I've read in a long time. Because I'm over 30 and I'm married, for some reason people think it's my "duty" to have children, which I find terribly offensive. I absolutely cannot WAIT to provide this argument as a reason for not having kids. So...thanks!

Also, welcome to Etsy...I'm going to check out your store now. I'm still building mine and trying to document improvements in my blog, but I've been traveling on assignment for work so I'm behind.

Good luck!

lee XY said...

Recently stumbled upon your blog and this post... but glad I did. Surprisingly the counterview evoked more number of comments at Rebecca's blog. I couldn’t agree more with every single word you posted. In my opinion we human have taken the process of reproduction for granted. We may not plant a single sapling all through our lifetime but we shall not refrain from producing a whole new generation to exploit every natural resource we couldn’t in our own lifetime. Perhaps for every species but human on this planet there is some eco mechanism in place to maintain the critical balance with the nature. And the One – Orthodox God or Unorthodox God – whoever designed this entire scheme of the Universe has endowed human with the power of discretion to make choices so that this gem of One’s creation otherwise known as Earth remain intact for ages if not for eternity.

Now we cannot cement the ozone hole over the poles and make it look like it used to when the earth was still virgin and there were not single oil well drilled. Or we cannot put the ice cap back on the glaciers and the beautiful lush green forest carpet on the mountains unless we curtail ever increasing and encroaching human population. Controlling human population may appear as an option today but soon it will be imperative for all including the theist and atheist, to put their act together or perish.

Am not yet married but I think I have already made my mind not to encase my future kid inside the consumerist human body. I would rather happy to see my kid growing up in heaven and watching how time ticks from up there sitting along side the Creator than drinking DDT enriched milk, breathing more Lead fumes less oxygen and adding strain on the environment down here on the Earth.

Well, my kid seems having a jolly good time up there...