Population Controllers Tout New Tool: Overconsumption
Bioethicist Peter Singer compared women and children to cows overgrazing a field and said — at the global Women Deliver Conference last week, hailed as the most important meeting to focus on women and girls’ human rights in a decade — that women’s reproductive rights may one day have to be sacrificed for the environment.
The controversial Princeton University professor, known for championing infanticide and bestiality, was a featured panelist on Thursday at the three-day Women Deliver conference attended by Melinda Gates and more than 4,000 abortion and contraception activists in Kuala Lumpur.
Singer said that since the world’s affluent are not likely to restrain their high rate of consumption compared to the world’s poor any time soon, and since it’s possible that family planning efforts may “turn out to be not enough…we ought to consider what other things there are that we can do …in order to try stave off some of the worst consequences of the environmental catastrophes…”
“It’s possible of course, that we give women reproductive choices, that we meet the unmet need for contraception but that we find that the number of children that women choose to have is still such that population continues to rise in a way that causes environmental problems,” he said. Women have more children because of their “ideological or religious views.”
Singer added that “greenhouse gases… are getting very close to a tipping point,” and climate change could become a “catastrophe and cause hundreds of millions or billions of people to become climate refugees.”
In that case, he said, “we need to consider whether we can talk about trying to reduce population growth and whether that’s compatible with the very reasonable concerns people have about women’s right to control their life decisions and their reproduction.”
Singer, who has also argued the case for bestowing international human rights on primates, said it is “appropriate to consider whether women’s reproductive rights are “fundamental” and unalterable or whether, in bioethicist speak, they are “prima facie — good and important to respect but there can be imaginable circumstances in which you may be justified in overriding them.”
Then Singer compared women’s right to bear children to the traditional villager’s right to graze their cows on “common” grounds. As the villagers get more affluent and their cows die less from disease, he said, until the commons are overgrazed, “yields are falling... and that’s a road to disaster.”
“Turns out that the right to graze as many cows as you like on the common was not an absolute right,” said Singer. “Obviously this is what I think we ought to be saying even about how many children we have… I hope we don’t get to a point where we do have to override it… but I don’t think we ought to shrink away from considering that as a possibility.”
His views were not entirely well received. Babtunde Osotimehin, executive director of the UNFPA objected that “There is no way we will come to a point where we are limiting the rights of people in this way.”
Osotimehin was one of a number of speakers at the conference to highlight what pro-lifers have been saying for decades: that “global population growth is actually coming down” and that predictions of worldwide famine and overpopulation disaster were way off the mark.
“India not only feeds itself, it exports food,” said Osotimehin. He added that while some regions of the world continue to grow, others have “more 65-year-olds than 5-year-olds and those countries have issues with how they are going to remain competitive.”
Earlier at the conference, Karolinska Institute Professor of International Health, Hans Rosling, clearly demonstrated (as opponents of population control have also contended for decades) that falling fertility is related to declines in infant mortality and to rising affluence. He also conceded that fears of a population “explosion” are grossly exaggerated and the world’s population will likely peak at about 9 billion, and then start to fall.
Harvard School of Public Health’s Alicia Yamin also said that the original population explosion proponent, Thomas Malthus, was wrong. “Human beings are more than just consumers” she said. They have “capacity for reason,” and are “active agents” able to solve problems.
The problem, a number of speakers identified, is overconsumption by the world’s wealthiest. “One third of the food that is produced in the world today is wasted, “ said Osotimehin. “So sometimes it is not about what is available, it is about the politics distribution and it is about the politics of access.”
“A homeless person in Denmark actually consumes more than a family of six in Tanzania,” he added.
And wealthy people in developed nations aim to consume as much as wealthy Americans. The “new population problem,” said Osotimehin, “is that every young person who grows up in Tanzania wants to drive an SUV.”
Kavita Ramdas, an Indian representative of the Ford Foundation in New Delhi pointed out that the “ecological footprint” of the average American’s consumption is 9.7 hectares, compared the average for a person from Mozambique: 4.7 hectares. An American SUV requires 44,000 gallons of water to produce it. And American houses grew 38% in size between 1975 and 2002, even though the number of people per household fell.
It is difficult to say how receptive the conference attendees were to this attack on American consumerism (Melinda Gates’ house is 66,000 square feet and features an indoor swimming pool is piped with an underwater sound system.) But Ramdas was just warming up.
“I don’t think all rights should be put in stone,” she said. “ Why can there not be a prima facie right imposed on the countries that are truly putting an unsustainable load on the planet for all of us?” She continued saying that the United States and Europe are not always going to have this “post-colonial glow in which they assume they are always going to have control.”
“If Americans consume more than Africans, they should be forced into a one child policy,” she said at one point.
When a journalist on the panel said he didn’t see “how to get the rich world to consume less,” Ramdas said: “You force it… you can force women to have less children, you can force people to consume less… Suck it up!”
“The world order has to change,” said Osotimehin, a Nigerian family doctor. “Not only about the environment, it has to change about rights, it has to change about transportation. It won’t do any country any good to stick to some norm that is actually hurting the rest of the world. It just won’t fly.”
Ramdas said the Global South will no longer tolerate Western “hypocrisy and their “other agenda.” “We have been there before, “she said. “ We have seen forced sterilizations. We have seen the fears that the West has of brown people overrunning the world. We are tired of being slaves to colonial masters.”
It is a point population control opponents at the Population Research Institute have been making for decades.
Ironically, Ramdas works for the Ford Foundation, one of the original architects of the global population control policies that she denounces. One Ford official, in the 1960s heyday of overpopulation fears of brown people reproducing themselves across the globe, speculated on record about “spraying an aerial contraceptive over India that could be neutralized with an antedotal pill on medical prescription.”
But in her closing remarks Ramdas moved away from population control to another global agenda. “We tend to talk a lot about family planning, but this is also about the choice not to have children. It's about the choice to understand that you can have sex just for the pleasure of having sex,” she said to applause and added that “free safe and legal abortion” is vital to the cause.
Unwittingly, Ramdas appears to to be advocating — and adopting herself — the very tenets of Western ideology that underpin the Western population control dogma she so despises: a hedonistic view of sex divorced from nature and family, a complete disregard for some human life, and an irrepressible urge to regulate the behaviour of others.
For more articles, click the first link in each drop-down menu, e.g. 2010 (v12).
- Weekly Briefing: Español
- La próxima batalla legislativa: el Proyecto de Ley sobre la toma de conciencia sobre el dolor
- ¿La legalización reduciría el aborto en América Latina?
- Las interrogantes de la demografía actual
- Informe de los Medios de Comunicación: Depo Provera es peligrosa para su salud.
- Canadá: una sorpresa ingrata
- Enfermeras dan el ejemplo: renuncian para no distribuir la Píldora del Día Siguiente a
- Ampliación de la Noticia: La desaparición del matrimonio
- Recordando a Reagan
- Population Research Institute expande su actividad; incorporándose en la fundación de
- Frenando la Expansión del HIV/SIDA mediante la Abstinencia (y la Doctrina Católica)
- Los Programas de Planificación Familiar de USAID merman los esfuerzos para frenar la promiscu
- Weekly Briefing: 2013 (v15)
- Controlling Women’s Desires in Kenya
- Why Do Filipino Women Die in Childbirth?
- Franchising Abortion and Sterilization
- Open response to: “Overpopulation: Should America have a one-child policy?
- What Does China Want?
- One Small Snip for Man, One Giant Snip for Mankind
- The End of America—as America
- Refugees Subject to Population Control
- Debunking the Myth of Overpopulation
- Contraception as a "Solution" to Abortion: No way!
- Cutting Foreign Aid to Save Lives
- A Crime in Time—and Again
- Catholic Relief Services Leaves Many Questions Unanswered
- Fundamental Reform Needed at Catholic Relief Services
- Madagascar Bishops and Clergy Complain about Catholic Relief Services' Activities
- Weekly Briefing: 2012 (v14)
- Will Russia Come Back to Life?
- China's one-child policy itself leads to forced abortions
- Why is Government (and Society) Discouraging Childbearing?
- UNICEF Should Rename Itself the United Nations Sex for Children Fund, or UNISEX
- America’s Pediatricians Claim the Right to Contracept Your Kids
- The Mirena IUD is Becoming More Popular - and the Lawsuits are Piling Up
- America's Depressed Birthrate
- Question: What Can we Expect From a Second Obama Administration on the Life Issues?
- Attending the Abortionists’ Annual Pep Rally
- Norplant is Back--Under a Different Name
- Sorry, Mr. Vice President, That Is Not a "Fact"
- Teenage Girl Becomes Infertile after Gardasil Vaccination
- The Contradiction of WHO
- Is Abortion Ever “Necessary?” The Evidence Says “No!”
- Of Mice and Men: New Study Touts a Male Contraceptive
- Weekly Briefing: 2011 (v13)
- Merry Christmas from PRI
- T-Shirts Are Available NOW!
- Catholic Health Care in Jeopardy
- Ban Sex Selective Abortions in the U.S.
- Pro-Life Amendment Defeated in Pro-Life Mississippi
- Baby Seven Billion, Welcome.
- Lies, Damned Lies, Statistics ... and Population Graphs
- Traditional Family Values
- We're In For A Scary Halloween (If You Listen to the Population Controllers)
- Take Good Care of Your Health Care Records - Or the Government Will!
- China's One-Child Policy Toll Reaches 400 Million
- Catholic Bishops Weigh Into Budget Debate
- Latest PRI Video Shows Collapse of Russia
- "Understanding" Joe Biden Perfects the Kowtow
- U.N. Climate Models Flawed - Grossly Exaggerate Warming Effect
- Weekly Briefing: 2010 (v12)
- Fourth Episode of Overpopulation Cartoon Series
- Turner Calls for Global One-Child Policy
- Love and HIV/AIDS
- Pope Benedict Misquoted on Condoms -- Again
- Planned Parenthood Wants to Abort Us into Prosperity
- As Elections Draw Near, PRI Releases Groundbreaking Video
- Does Obamacare Fund Abortion? Let Us Count the Ways.
- Islamic Terrorism and Fertility
- China's Thirty Years War Against its Own People Slated to Continue
- Time to Pay an "End-of-Life Visit" to ObamaCare
- PRI Updates Web Site, Releases New Video
- Radical Environmentalists Disclaim Responsibility for Eco-Terrorist James Lee
- A Farce: The UN's World Youth Conference
- After Passage of Pro-Abortion Constitution, Kenyan Bishops Urge Immediate Amendment
- The United Nations must love Catholics, we give them their best ideas.
- Weekly Briefing: 2009 (v11)
- In His Push for Socialized Medicine, Harry Reid Trashes the Hyde Amendment
- Global Warming Science? Nope, Global Warming Scam.
- Senator Max Baucus Wants to Teach Your Kids About Sex
- Blasted Ovaries: The Failure of Contraceptive Vaccines
- The Overpopulation Movement Struggles to Stay Relevant
- What's Next for the Pro-Life Movement in Health Care Reform?
- Sneak Attack on the Mexico City Policy
- Spain Awakens Against Abortion
- Merck Researcher Admits: Gardasil Guards Against Almost Nothing
- With 19 You Get Heaven
- Population Control to Combat Climate Change?
- Illegal Abortion Hot-Lines: A New Attack on the Unborn
- Obama to Seniors: Take Two Aspirin and Call Me When You're Dead
- Washington Feels the Wrath of Pro-Life Voters
- People Are The Enemy
- Weekly Briefing: 2008 (v10)
- Doug Kmiec's Departure from the Pro-Life Movement
- Abortion and Intolerance: Constants of the Left?
- The Huffington Post Gets It Wrong--Again
- China Frees Pregnant Mom after International Outcry
- Executive (Dis)Orders: Pro-life Policies Set to be Jettisoned
- Payback Time: What Planned Parenthood Expects from Obama
- Killing The Economy: Dennis Howard's "Elephant In The Living Room"
- How to Sell Out Your Country With Just One Word
- Is Immigration the Answer to the Current Economic Crisis?
- Wisconsin Offers "Free" Birth Control -- with Your Money
- USAID Denies Funding to Abortion Group Implicated in Forced Abortions and Sterilizations in China; PRI Applauds Action
- A New Front in the Abortion Wars
- Cyclebeads: The UNFPA Discovers Natural Family Planning, Sort Of
- Sarah Palin, An American Original
- "Kids: Your Time Is Up" -- Global Warming Game Targets Vulnerable Youngsters
- Weekly Briefing: 2007 (v09)
- Preserving Parental Rights in Panama
- Saving the Mexico City Policy
- How Family Planning Programs Cause Sex-Selective Abortion, Female Infanticide, and Other Forms of Ch
- Patrick Carroll's Research and the ABC Link Debate
- What Women Want (Hint: Not Reproductive Health Care)
- Fighting for Our Rights
- Reproductive Health Mortality
- House Democrats Stage Hearing on the Mexico City Policy
- Gender Equity and the Demeaning of Men's Issues
- The Obstetric Fistula Fallacy
- Chimeras, Great Britian, and the Brave New World
- Are There Too Many Columbians
- US Bishops Issue a New CALL to Latinos
- HillaryCare, 2.0
- HIV/AIDS: Western Failure and Ugandan Success
- Weekly Briefing: 2006 (v08)
- Irish Exceptionalism at an End?
- Suicide of the West?
- 300 Million and Immigration: Separating the Issues
- A Cut for Population Control Money?
- 300 Million, Social Security, and Solvency
- Pro-Life Politics
- The Small Problem of Suburban Sprawl
- Three Hundred Million and Counting
- Abortion the Cheap Easy Way
- Life in the News
- Restricting Women's Rights
- FDA Prepares Sell-Out on MAP
- Senate Democrats'Make-Believe on Girls' Abortions
- Kinder, Gentler Genocide in Mongolia
- World Population Aging 2006
- Weekly Briefing: 2005 (v07)
- What Mexican Women Want
- Will making pregnancy profitable save Italy from demographic destruction?
- House Takes an Interest in the RU-486 Poison Pill
- Getting U.S. Out of Abortion
- Time for a RU-486 Rollback
- A Feast for Life
- More Smiles for Scalito
- Abuse of Chinese Women and Children
- France's End
- Smiles for Scalito
- Abortion Doubters at the Washington Post?
- Mostly the Same, But UNFPA Discovers Fatherlessness
- UN AIDS Envoy Cant Stomach Abstinence
- Living the Gospel of Life Down Under
- Pro-Abortion Court Revolution Targets Colombia
- Weekly Briefing: 2004 (v06)
- Unlike Europe's, U.S. Population Continues to Grow--And in the Right Places
- Abortion by Other Means
- China's Persecution of Women and Children: More of the Same
- Canada Cuts off Chinese Women's Freedom in Order to Spite America's Face
- Would Legalization Reduce Abortion in Latin America?
- The Conscience Protection Amendment and NARAL's "D"
- The Abortion Pill Can Kill Mothers, Too
- Will Families Benefit from Tax Reform?
- The Unacceptable Arlen Specter
- How to Reduce the Number of Abortions (Hint:
- UNICEF: The Mask is Off!
- Secularism's Demographic Conundrum
- Despite Bumper Harvests, Lester Brown's Sky is Still Falling
- Peruvian Congress could punish prolife congressmen.
- Media Reports: Depo Provera Is Hazardous to your Health
- Weekly Briefing: 2003 (v05)
- Exposing Domestic Abortion Strategies
- New Revision Points to Underpopulation Crisis
- PRI needs your help for continued success in 2004
- The Coming Demographic Victory
- In Thanksgiving to God for People
- People: the Greatest Unmet Need
- Gates, Microsoft Urged by Shareholders to Cease Making Charitable Contributions
- President Bush Signs Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003
- The BBC's Method of HIV/AIDS Prevention
- Judge Robert Bork in Lincoln Nebraska
- USAID-funded FHI Exploits Women
- Population Control on our Shores
- The Two Sides of the Culture of Death
- Secretary Powell Cuts $25 Million More from UNFPA
- USAID Undercuts U.S. Global HIV/AIDS Initiative
- Weekly Briefing: 2002 (v04)
- Casting Lotts and Throwing Stones in the U.S. Congress
- Bush vs. Bangkok, Abortion as 'Reproductive Health'
- UK Pro-Aborts Seek to CHANGE Peruvian Health Policy
- UNFPA Seeks Drinking Friends to Fund Forced Abortion
- Condom Kingdom Deflated by Failure (Are You Listening, Bill?)
- USAID "Shifts" Focus to More Aggressive Population Policy for the Philippines
- Making "Reproductive Rights" (Read: Abortion) a Relic of the Past
- Broken Promises: Reproductive Rights Agenda Betrays Women and Children
- EU to Increase UNFPA Funding? Not so Fast!
- UNFPA Admits it Has No Way to Monitor China's Forced Abortion Population Program
- Graduating Countries from Population Control
- Foreign Aid in a Grown Up World
- ABOUT FACE: Norplant Victim Sues Wyeth, OBGYN for $120 Million
- How to Save Lives with $34 Million
- Project Afghanistan: A Situation Report
- Weekly Briefing: 2001 (v03)
- Urgent Action Alert! Call on President Bush to Zero-Fund UNFPA
- UNFPA Whitewashes Forced Abortion in China
- Hillary Clinton Forces Abortion Rights Agenda on Afghan Women
- Pro-Family Groups Condemn UNFPA
- Abortion Zealots Threaten Afghan Women
- Muslims Shocked by Western-led 'Genocide' in Refugee Camps
- UNFPA Hides Coercion Behind a Green Front
- An open letter from Steven W. Mosher to Thoraya Obaid, Executive Director of the United Nations Popu
- PRI Investigation of UNFPA Prompts Hearing on Forced Abortion in China
- UNFPA Supports Coercive Family Planning—Including Forced Abortion—In China (and PRI Has
- Abortion Group Targets Vulnerable Victims of Terror
- China's Role in Osama bin Laden's 'Holy War' On America
- America's Frozen Population
- What African Women Want (not "Reproductive Health Care")
- About Face
- Weekly Briefing: 2000 (v02)
- What the Abortion-Breast Cancer Link Means for Women in the Developing World
- Executive Orders to Save Lives
- Heedless of Demographic Dangers, Beijing Pushes Ahead with One-Child Policy
- Amend U.S. China Policy
- United in Opposing People
- RU 486 and Our Ties to China
- Abortion and Population Control
- Drowning Babies in Dollars
- AIDS and Population Control In Africa
- Family Planning Costs Lives
- Another Country
- Population Growth and its Enemies
- Immigration verus Population Control
- Land of the Setting Sun
- The Ordeal of Chinese Mothers Continues: New Evidence of Massive Female Infanticide
- Weekly Briefing: 1999 (v01)
- Planned Giving
- Depopulation Strikes New England
- Albright Scrambles to Appease Population Control Allies
- Wei Jingsheng Calls for Democracy in America
- UNFPA Bribes Kosovo Gynecologist
- Chinese Freedom Fighters to Meet at Historical Summit Conference
- Population Control and the New Global Racism
- Welcome Baby Six Billion!
- UNFPA Spokesman Lies About Milosevic Partnership to Preserve US Funding
- Know Your Rights!
- Feminist Rights Agenda Storms United Nations
- When Family Planning Is Ethnic Cleansing
- New York Post Faults UN Agency for Ethnic Cleansing of Albanians
- Reversing Itself, UNFPA Admits Ties to Milosevic Regime
- Disney Continues to Propagandize 'Myth of Overpopulation' in Public Schools