NaNoWriMo – Seven Billion and Counting

I guess it’s kind of appropriate — the official announcement that world population has reached 7 billion comes one day before NaNoWriMo starts and I begin my science fiction novel. While the world celebrates the birth of the seven billionth baby, an event that should be mourned, I’ll be examining a near-future world in which sheer desperation has driven more than one government to institute compulsory sterilization programs.

Some form of population control is in our future, even though it will be too little and too late. What form it will take is unpredictable. Will it be China’s unsuccessful ban on more than one child in a family, or something more draconian? And just how desperate do we have to become before people understand that the right to have as many children as you want can’t continue?

Discussions of population concentrate on the reduction in family size over the last few decades, even in some nations that have historically encouraged large families. That’s supposed to be good news. But it ignores the reality that the reduction isn’t enough to stop the increase in world population, and that population will continue to increase, even if the rate of increase slows down.

A factor that’s seldom taken into account and certainly never mentioned by mainstream media is the coming impact of global climate change. Disease vectors are changing, some of them spreading to new areas of the world. The eventual flood of climate refugees will overload some areas, bringing people into ever closer contact and making serious epidemics far more common. Food shortages will place more people under the threat of malnutrition and susceptibility to disease. In short, we have created a world in which we have returned to Nature the power to control population.

Some day, we might understand that the personal and political concerns that have made real population control impossible were the cause of the worldwide suffering that is bound to come.

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4 thoughts on “NaNoWriMo – Seven Billion and Counting

  1. I’ll never understand why people insist on making new babies while perfectly good babies and children continue to languish in orphanages and foster homes (not diminishing the value of foster homes, I’m pointing my finger at the deliberate breeders). Many even spend thousand$ on fertility treatments, then end up with more embryos then they wanted in the first place. Then they elect to gestate *all* the embryos. “Insanity” and “willful, profound ignorance” are the only causes of this tragic phenomenon. Thousand$ on needless fertility treatments while untold thousands of babies all over the world suffer and die of malnutrition. Obscene. Want a kid but can’t adopt? Become a sponsor, a foster parent, a babysitter or work or volunteer in an orphanage! If you love kids that much, don’t turn your back on the ones who are already here and desperately need food and shelter.

    Oh yeah . . happy NaNo-ing . . 🙂

    1. It’s just one example of human insanity–women who let their hormones or their brainwashed concept of what makes a “real” woman dictate that they have to bear their own children. I sometimes I wish I could ask one of them how that makes them any different from animals that breed because nature created them that way. And the ones that claim that they love children so much? Like the old women who take advantage of current fertility and surrogate techniques to have children–and then die when the kids are still young and leave them motherless. Or the brain-dead breeding machines that turn out one child after another.

      Happy NaNoing to you too. I’ll be peeking in to check your word count.

    1. There’s always hope, though at my age, I’m getting discouraged. My NaNo novel does include a mention of enforced sterilization as part of the new government’s policies.

      Good luck with your NaNo novel.

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