The Myth of Overpopulation

& the Wickedness of Birth Control


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A few months ago I ran across a news article about the Duggars, a family with 19 children who have gained fame by being featured on a ‘reality tv’ show. And while not Catholic (they are instead Evangelic Protestants as far as I can tell, what others call ‘Protestant Evangelicals’ or ‘born again believers’, etc.) --- and thus not on the way to salvation in their present state of false religion --- they are to be commended for not being afraid to bear the fruit of the womb, and for displaying a large family that is attractive in the sight of others because they live an orderly life and demonstrate charity for each other in their home.


But, of course, the mere mention of such people brought disparaging remarks & modernist commentary. The world is overpopulated! pontificated many readers. It’s disgusting & selfish! said others. They should be fixed! declared some.


And so forth and so on. Everybody knows the rigmarole nowadays. We are so saturated in anti-offspring propaganda for the last forty years that the litany is very predictable. I know, because I used to believe in it. Before becoming Catholic and while studying for my degree at the university, I was a typical ZPGer (zero population growth partisan).


Then I came to realize the truth about the situation. That truth is distilled below in a brief commentary of my own that I submitted to the news site. I have no idea if it was posted. They may have blackballed it. But you, my dear reader, can benefit from it here. Nothing has been changed except for breaking it into small little paragraphs, incorporating the date of transmission, and adding emphasis, such as underlining & italics.


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19 September 2009


Having lots of children is not ‘selfish’ --- what’s greedy is refusing to have children in a marriage because you can keep more money, have more fun, and indulge sexual pleasure without the responsibility of offspring that often comes along with it.


Meanwhile, justifying this greed by worrying about the earth is a lame excuse. People with large families can just as easily refrain from polluting this world or wasting its resources as can people with small families. To say otherwise is to assume that human beings are totally evil and don’t have a right to exist (the person thinking this always making an exception for his own existence, of course).


But the truth is very different:


Our Creator made us in His Image, to look like Him in both soul & body.


And every single man, woman & child is worth an entire cosmos because of this simple fact. We are the centerpiece of His Garden, and what gardener does not want a much-loved plant to grow, spread and produce something valuable?


It is for this reason that the human race is made to bear fruit. It is why we are on the earth.


In marriage, that fruit is children. All of the sarcasm about ‘rabbit-like reproduction’ is mindless & degrading. Critics of this sort make people (and themselves) into stomachs with mouths and an intelligent brain attached as a kind of random afterthought.


What else can they think when the only thing that matters to them is the pleasures of this world and how smart a person can be to enjoy them?


Hence the demand for so-called ‘birth control’. By it, husbands are free to become insatiable leches, wives free to become just-as-insatiable whores, and children are merely an economic consideration that, in older days, were required in large numbers to make a farm profitable or to overcome high rates of mortality --- or, as is the case in more recent times, kept in much smaller numbers to satisfy some kind of an ‘emotional desire’ on the part of wannabe parents.


Yet what is the more difficult to believe --- that people are only animals with smart brains (in which case, the dumber you are then the less you matter) or that every person is wildly important because every one of them is made by an Infinitely Smart God in His Infinitely Great Image?


Which then leads anyone to see that there is no such thing as ‘too many children’. Every single child is wanted by the Creator. And can the God that created the world out of nothing, and Who provides for the least of the animals on this earth, fail to care for those that He made in His Image and who humbly ask Him for their daily needs?


Obviously not.


Poverty, then, is not a reason to avoid children. We don’t truly need most of the things that the modern world leads us to believe are necessary, and we are too proud to live like our ancestors who did not have these things. Yet who is to be blamed when employers refuse to pay a person what he needs to support his family and cites the market (read: how little everyone else gets paid for the very same job) as justification for their tight fistedness?


No, the problem is not large families. It is small minds and big prejudices, along with a lot of greed & arrogance.


                                                                                      -Paul Doughton


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