Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Reference: America will be just fine, Bangkok Post, April 7, 2010

On the one hand, Western pundits warn us about the dangers of an impending "population bomb" brought about by overpopulation. We are told that the planet is being overwhelmed by the sheer number of people on it and will soon be unable to supply us with sufficient food, water, shelter, and energy and so we must do everything we can to control the population growth rate.

On the other hand, we find that the Western nations themselves are scrambling for population growth to the point that the United States is now counting on a vigorous fertility rate to boost its population to 400 million by the year 2050 as a way of gaining economic advantage over nations with more stable populations (America will be just fine, Bangkok Post, April 7, 2010).

We thus find that the same nations that fund anti-fertility programs to limit population growth in Asia and Africa are, at the same time, gloating about their ability to increase fertility and growth rate of their own populations.

These contradictions raise serious questions. Is population growth good or bad? Is the population bomb a global problem or a localized one? To protect the planet from the population bomb should the population growth in some areas be restricted while that in others encouraged?

Cha-am Jamal

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