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  • It’s Irresponsible to Have More Than 2 Kids

    That’s according to Jonathon Porritt, who chairs the UK’s Sustainable Development Commission. The carbon footprint from having more than two children will inflict too much damage on the environment to justify having any more. Straight from Porritt’s mouth:

    I am unapologetic about asking people to connect up their own responsibility for their total environmental footprint and how they decide to procreate and how many children they think are appropriate.

    I think we will work our way towards a position that says that having more than two children is irresponsible. It is the ghost at the table. We have all these big issues that everybody is looking at and then you don’t really hear anyone say the “p” word.”

    Although population control is nothing new and to debate population control is not the point of this post. (Even though population control is also just one more example of tired old leftist ideas being dusted off as solutions to climate change.) The point is to point out how ridiculous (and arbitrary) it is for environmental reasons.

    James Lileks makes a number of good points. Here’s two.

    It hasn’t taken long, but it’s taken hold: children, to some, are not bundles of joys, but bundles of sticks whose inevitable combustion harms the planet. It doesn’t matter whether reducing the population might deprive the world of another Mozart or a scientist who can cure cancer; the latter would just mean people living longer and going more harm, and it’s an act of pure cultural arrogance and classism to suggest we need another Mozart anyway.

    But why are two kids okay? Perhaps because the fellow speaking has two of his own”

    Posted in Energy [slideshow_deploy]

    36 Responses to It’s Irresponsible to Have More Than 2 Kids

    1. KATHRYN TURNER says:

      May I suggest the only reason it matters how many children one procreates is because the collective understanding has evolved that society is responsible for them and doesnt want the burden. How far have we strayed off the belief that we are a free nation when this is the subliminal understanding that doesnt even require mentioning?

    2. Kathy, Wyoming says:

      Let the little children come unto me for of such is the Kingdom of heaven. Children are such a blessing! Too bad some have moved so far away from that.

    3. Spiritof76, New Hamp says:

      I think those that promote population control in the name of environment should help out by killing themselves.

      As a matter of fact, one of the biggest polluter is Al Gore. I think reducing his carbon foot print alone would allow at least 500 children to prosper.

    4. Ozzy6900, CT says:

      So now the Global Warming crowd is going to tell us how many children are enough?

      Wait, maybe they have something here. Think about all the "welfare kids" out there (like the octuplets), all the children that are abused and killed in the United States. Think about all those hurting and starving children that they keep marching across the late night TV commercials. I think that we don't need to limit the amount of children we have, I think that people should have to take an exam just to be able to have kids!!!

      Of course my suggestion is ludicrous but no more so than the limiting of children because of a carbon footprint!

    5. Steve, Colorado says:

      I posted at http://www.startyourfamily.com/2009/01/green-babi… about the interesting debate that's taking place between environmentalists who are anti-natal and those who see children as not only compatible with creation care but also as the future human capital who can steward the earth in the years to come.

    6. Michael, Arizona says:

      It's a fact that a limit of two children in any society guarantees the extinction of that society in just a few generations. This trend is already well advanced in Italy and other European countries, with no identifiable benefit. Another fact is that non-Christian societies, most notably the Islamic ones, have substantial birth rates. When these two are combined with the geopolitical aspirations of the Islamists, we can see a future scrubbed clean not only of Judeo-Christian culture, but also of individual liberty. If current demographic trends go unaltered, Freedom, God's most precious gift to Man, will vanish.

    7. Kristie Preston, MI says:


      Jesus stated, "Whoever welcomes a child in my name welcomes me." Matthew 18:5 and Luke 9:48

      "Collective understanding" will lead many astray,-wide is the path that leads to destruction-(Matthew 7:13)

      Wisdom comes from the Lord. When you have more faith in God than government, you have no need to worry about this "global warming" propaganda.

      "The earth is the Lord's and the fullness thereof…" Psalm 24:1

      Here in MI, they can't even predict the weather accurately most of the time, so any spectulations about climate change are just that…speculations.

    8. Suzanne, Chicago says:

      Please don't think that Jonathon Porritt speaks for all that believe serious action needs to be taken to correct our environmental footprint. Population control is not only un-Godly, it is a sure way to eventually eradicate ourselves. To someone who believes in being a steward and protector of the beautiful Earth God created, Mr. Porritt's view is extremist!

    9. Sheila Lawrenceburg, says:

      I believe the earth was created in preparation for the arrivial of human beings. The earth was created by God out of love as a gift to the people. We human beings are even created in the image of the Creator. To limit the gift of life is so evil.

      The earth was created first but it was all created for you, me and all the people before us and who will come after us. God willing.

    10. Suzanne, Texas says:

      It seems that it is responsible American citizens who are not having enough LEGITIMATE babies. I think we ought to find a way to prevent teenagers, idiots like "Octo-Mom", and intergenerational welfare cheats from having babies at all until, and if, they become responsible, fully-employed citizens and they get married. I would not be adverse to forced birth-control implants at puberty (at their parents expense, of course), which would not be removed until those individuals had demonstrated the acquisition of economic independence and responsibility. If we just removed the illegal aliens and their "anchor babies" from our country, the taxpayer dividends would be huge. A giant step in any of these directions would be to repeal all welfare programs which I define as any program that forces individual taxpayers to support with, tax dollars, anybody else.

    11. John Gearheart, IA says:

      How about all of leftists/environMENTALists that buy into this man-made global warming bunk, hook-line-and-sinker, have no children at all. Think of what a gift that would be to their earth goddess. They could all choose not to procreate at all. Think of how that would reduce their "carbon footprint." And, think of how that would truly create a brighter future for the rest of us. I think I'll start a grassroots effort to promote this idea. Who's with me??

    12. Sliver Wisconsin says:

      It is simply amazing how many radical people that are out there, I took a trip to Sweden in the early 70s to visit my relation, they told me that the government wanted couples to have more children. Guess what the reason was, their socialist government was in trouble back then. Now we have too many people polluting the earth, give me a break. I sure pity the future generations, they will be living in a 1984 world if we the people don't wake up.

    13. Orange Park, Florida says:

      I agree with Spirit of 76, New Hampshire!

    14. William Cole - Texas says:

      Considering that Social Security is no more than a quasi pyramid scheme that depends on present and future generations paying taxes to support the current retirees, how does two children per household sustain or "BAILOUT" a system currently in dire straits?

    15. Tim AZ says:

      Environmental wackos are conflicted and tormented by their religion. They heap upon themselves guilt for crimes against Nature, Mother Earth, or God however they define it. They blame themselves and all Americans for global warming that is purely a faith based concept. The earth has been cooling since 1998. To believe that God or Mother Earths creations such as Natural Gas, Coal, Oil,Carbon Dioxide and all other components of nature are inherently evil and destructive. Requires one to accept that God or Mother Earth is an evil and crewl entity who enjoys maiming and killing all of its own living creatures including man. By selectivly placing dangerous natural resources throughout the planet and then sets back and watches all of it's creations destroy themselves requires a suspension of disbelief. Liberals however never let a good crisis go to waist even when it is a farce. when they discover a crisis real or imagined they think to themselves how much wealth and power can be gained. And how long can we ride this train before it gets derailed. The answer may be all the way to the end.

    16. Lynn B. DeSpain says:

      No one can control the population. It will continue its increasing to its own distruction or to new worlds to live on. What I would like to see don in this Country, is that after two children, no more Welfare! Any man that makes more than two fatherless chilren-castration. Any woman who knowingly (Octomom) bears more children that it is imaginable for her to physically and monetarily take care of, place her in a mental hospital-forever, and adopt the children out, if possible. We already have three and a half times more people than we did sixty years ago. Imagine how may in another sixty. Times change, but we do not have to endure bad behavior. Besides, Al Gore and His Ilk are all pseudo intellectual news grabbers, that for some reason enjoy running around shouting,"The sky is falling!"


    17. Sue, Traverse City, says:

      The speed with which these changes are being made and the seriousness being accorded to these bizarre ideas is chilling. The thought of not having my daughter with me because she is some kind of liability as a 3rd child is absolute craziness. Who are these people and how have they spread their sickness so quickly? I can only pray for my children – that they are able to wrest this society back from the brink of extinction. God help us all!

    18. ggregory Saint Louis says:

      I find the argument for two children, to protect the earth too be sick. I am a proud father of four wonderful children. I cannot imigine what life would be like without the third and fourth children That I have. My wife and I would have more if her health would permit. So we are looking into adoption and foster children.

    19. Denise Amundson says:

      Two kids, my ass. Sorry, but with all the illegals poised to take over this and other countries by out-procreating the US, we need to practice replacing our masses.

      To be economically responsible to this Country, we should have 2 or more kids. One each to replace Mom and Dad and then extras! We have four and we make a point to tell our kids it's the right thing to do… the "law of Kids".

    20. karenfaye, Trooper, says:

      "Children are gifts from God. Blessed is the man whose quiver if full of them!" One of my huge personal regrets is that I was convinced in the 70s that 2 children was a good idea. I wish I had

      many more!!! Secondly, a lot of people now actively resist raising their children responsibly and with delight and discipline — this is a modern phenomenon right along with our self-centered, entertainment focused lives. God

      help us … what can we do to stall this movement???

    21. Pingback: frankhagan.com » Big Families Save the Planet

    22. Richard, Ogden, UT says:

      I think that Michael of Arizona has it right. I understand that some of the european nations are in decline because of decreasing birth rates. More children will also mean more producers too.

    23. Barb -mn says:

      So what do the responsible people get? just kidding…

      Take away the welfare! And all those EXCLUSIVE PROGRAMS!

      People will be forced to be responsible for the children they bring into the world.

    24. Nick, Cleveland, OH says:

      Not only are children wonderful blessings from God, they are ESSENTIAL for our society to perpetuate itself. If we in the West don't start replacing ourselves with more abundance,(i.e. have more than 2 kids) our magnificent Judeo-Christian society will be overrun and extinguished by Islamic extremists who don't share our values or our heritage.

    25. Julie, Midland, MI says:

      You can lead liberals to the truth but you can't make them think. Example: If they put the brakes on population, who will they tax to pay for their ego-inflating programs that hard working, honest, responsible, charitable people do not want? Also, I do believe that it is the liberal agenda to kill babies before their born…again, depleting their potential coffers of individuals to heap taxes onto. I truly don't know how they keep it all straight…oh, that's right, they don't.

    26. Claudia McIlvain says:

      I'm with John Gearheart. Those that tell us what should be, and how many children we should have, should follow their own advise (demands) Since they are so smart, they should know that we won't follow. Therefore, they should over- compensate to save their precious planet. No more children for those that value a humanless planet over celebrating human life on this planet….and beyond.

    27. joe cappello,riversi says:

      to me this is lunacy and a bunch of lies,from me and my four sons.

    28. charles, wyoming.usa says:

      sounds like communism, more control by the government, just as in any socialist country.

    29. Joyce, Hinesville GA says:

      Wake up please America!! See the writing on the wall…it has never been more clearer.

    30. Violet,Nazareth,Pa. says:

      I need to weigh in here.

      I am 87,a WW11 vet and I am thankful to have 4 children,9 grandchildren,soon to have the 5th and 6th great gradchildren.

      Every one is a pleasure,and all have been a credit to our country.

      All are Christians.

      I was an only child,

      It was a lonely life,given all material blessings,but no knowledge of learning to stand up for your own rights in school and elsewhere.

      I finally learned albeit late,and now I am ready to do battle to those who are trying to take our rights away.

      Listen to Glen Beck on Fox news at 5 p.m.if you don`t understand what rights are being planned to take from us,and you will understand.

      We need to have as many children as we can properly raise -to be responsible citizens,who want notta from the government,and want to keep more of what we have!!AMEN!!

    31. Cmiller Colorado says:

      Wow how far have we strayed from the Lord, that this is even a question or atittude. Let it known I will not be understanding of any philosophy that would diminish human life for the sake of evil agenda to "save the planet". You save people first, the planet will be taken care of when we take care of people.Why don't these enviro crazies see that?

    32. Jack Dixon says:

      Funny . . .

      I don't hear any condemnation of all the "welfare babies" being squeezed-out so 'Mama' gets a bigger welfare check!

      Let's address the issue at the level where the greatest harm is inflicted!

      My Bride of 32 yrs and I have 3 responsible, educated children – 2 sons serving in the USAF and a daughter in her Sr. year at IN U.

      Tell me . . . which one I'm supposed to kill?

      Spiritof76, New Hampshire, YOU ROCK!

      I'm with you 210%!!!

    33. ThinkLife, Ann Arbor says:

      Good people of this small, fragile Earth–wake up! And please stop reproducing so much!

      The narrow views espoused in the blog above and its sympathetic replies are astoundingly ignorant. Won't anyone do basic research before spouting so self-assuredly?

      I hear a mighty clatter of knees jerking without so much as a brain to control them! We do have brains, so please–let's use them to our fullest capacity. Most of you need a good scolding by Al Gore and Paul Erlich, or any climate change scientist, never mind the facts.

      But the facts ARE the facts, they are bigger than you, me, Rush, Sean and "W"–and no amount of self-centered wailing, gnashing of teeth, quoting scripture or childish wishing can change them.

      Deal with it: overpopulation is severely damaging our present and WILL destroy our future unless we stop it.

      “The pressing need for a much smaller world population arises for two reasons. Humans are emitting about two and a half times as much carbon as the maximum permissible to achieve stabilisation of carbon in the atmosphere. Today's six billion humans, in striving to enjoy at least a basic quality of life, are damaging many vital ecological systems and causing a major extinction of other forms of life. Within the next half century, a new and compelling reason for a smaller human population is likely to arise through the fact that we cannot be at all sure that a suitable replacement to fossil fuel energy is going to be found. Analysis of all these aspects indicates the need for a world population of about 2000 million (2 billion).”

      –“Intractable limits to a sustainable human population,” abstract by A. R. Ferguson at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16050245

      The facts:

      1) The earth is overpopulated. A sustainable population can only be roughly estimated, since the calculations are extremely complicated. A sustainable level may be 1-2 billion, according to research by NPG, ZPG and other organizations.

      2) Global warming, pollution, rampant species decimation, habitat destruction–all of it is directly linked to overpopulation. Something has to give when people have been allowed, en masse, to create an unsustainable situation that is becoming a crisis on too many fronts to effectively manage.

      3) Nobody wants to limit personal freedoms for no good reason–but when the health of all of society is challenged by unfettered freedoms, then those freedoms must be limited. Society must limit the rights of individuals in novel ways when novel problems erupt due to the burdens that overpopulation places on habitats and individuals.

      We don't allow people the freedom to defecate and urinate in the streets. It harms human health, no matter how "free" one might feel doing it. It's the same with child overproduction–no matter how crass the analogy may seem to some.

      Similarly, corporations that want complete "freedom" to lie, cheat, overcharge and pollute must be limited and pay for the burdens they place on society. Take their waste products, for example–please! Somebody, take them! Their "freedoms" that would limit the civil rights of others can't be allowed.

      Individuals are no different; we all take actions, and those actions have consequences. When 10 people move into a 1000 square mile area and live on small farms, the ecological impact is minimal. When 10,000 people move in, they may create an ecological catastrophe.

      4) It's silly to think that quoting a 2,000-year-old religious tome–one that is utterly irrelevant to this situation–makes it okay to overpopulate. The Bible was written for small tribes living in a world whose population was (and this is a complete guess) perhaps 200 million–with no access to dangerous technologies that have created nuclear and chemical waste, for just two examples.

      Get off the high (what have you been smoking?) horse and get real–this is the 21st century and we don't pollute only with goats, sheep, horses and cows any more.

      The volume of waste that humans now spew into our closed environment–our fragile bubble, Earth–is titanic compared with Biblical times and would have been inconceivable to Moses, Paul, Jesus or Mother Mary.

      We wield two mighty destructive powers

      “The twentieth century has been marked by a profound historical development: an unwitting evolution of the power to seriously impair human life-support systems.”

      –Gretchen C. Daily and Paul R. Ehrlich in BioScience, November, 1992.

      Their landmark article cites nuclear weapons as one source of this deadly power. The other is overpopulation.

      The authors note the incredible difficulties involved in “curbing the increasingly devastating impact of the human population. In particular, the most personal life decisions of every inhabitant of the planet are involved and these are controlled by socioeconomic systems in which the incentives for sacrificing the future for the present are often overwhelming.”

      The article carefully examines the Earth’s “carrying capacity” –scientifically defined as “the maximal population size of a given species that an area can support without reducing its ability to support the same species in the future.”

      Furthermore, the authors note “it seems prudent to evaluate the problem of sustainability for selfish, myopic people who are poorly organized politically, socially, and economically.”

      Population control is the best way to save the Earth

      The myopic beliefs and resistance to scientific fact espoused in the original blog above—as well as its many sympathetic responses—demonstrate Daily's and Erlich's observations.

      Slandering "tired old leftist ideas" about mediating climate change is mere conservative horn blowing, bereft of any scientific data—and thus unjustified in any sense.

      The exact opposite is true: Population control is THE ONE solution to climate change that would have the MOST impact if accomplished. Morals dictate that it must be achieved humanely, of course. Mass murder is no tool of progressives, who only want to help humanity and our fellow species.

      Labeling such ideas "leftist" or "liberal" is a feeble attempt to amass a crowd of the ignorant–like the Ditto-heads who parrot Rush no matter how fact-free his trumpeting– and cajole them into joining a buffalo herd behind the aforementioned stupid, cunning, self-centered or ignorant leaders.

      The key question

      How will the smart, prudent, concerned people convince the ignorant, stupid, myopic and selfish to change when the numbers and power of the latter are so much greater?

      This has been the greatest challenge the ecology movement has faced, as well as the reason for its lack of success: resistance based on stupidity, ignorance, greed and lack of foresight.

      The problem is that large numbers of people and powerful individuals:

      · are so deluded by religious leaders that they literally believe the Earth was formed just 6,000 years ago

      · just want to drive their favorite gas-guzzling SUVs no matter how much the vehicles damage the environment en masse

      · are too lazy, ignorant or apathetic to protest policies that are driving vast changes in the entire earth’s ecology

      · lead corporations with a drive for profits that far outpaces their concerns for human and ecological health

      · lead corrupt governments that value profits over people and the planet

      The evidence for this is the massive ecological and human health damage ALREADY done (but NOT paid for) by corporations led by greedy, shortsighted but very cunning persons with friends in high places. Let’s specifically cite Monsanto, Exxon, Dow Chemical, Gelman Sciences, Love Canal, Three Mile Island, Chernobyl—and that’s the tip of the iceberg: those who’ve been caught.

      Again, deal with it: reproduce less and help the Earth.

      If you keep popping out babies, you’re worse than a common criminal: you could be a party to mass murder and species destruction on a scale that rivals the dinosaur’s extinction.

      So what do you want to do? Play God/Devil/Shiva, or live sustainably?

      Sustainability with quality of life–or future mass extinctions: these are the results parents also collectively create when they reproduce.

    34. Leroy says:

      ^^^ i thought i was the only one looking at the bigger picture! These people bring religion as to justify the problem are the kind we need to educate! How are we suppose to make a change when the parents of these kids dont even admit there is a problem!

      Life on this blue planet is simple…You are born,you nee food and water, now fight to survive….those are the laws we all abide! Now we have come to a stage in our development that every person wants to be as comfortable as possible..we all guilty, and im changing my habbits for the better!

      Now at these christians who come on here quoting the bible, you should not be so ignorant to think that your actions will be solved by God! As he has taught you from the start, where there is life there is death….

      Every thing he has created needs to be sustained by some other life form be it plant on animal. So think now… if lions had the ability to populate the earth like we have, where does all the food come and go to? A spieces is only as strong as it food source, lets not even talk about space… everything we do has a impact!

      Now go read the bible where it teachs to love and care but also respect every creation of this planet! cause clearly you think its fine for us to molest everything we were given….look at wild stock… now ask yourself this….. what will planet Earth be like if only humans walked the earth, what would your kids think of you now!

    35. Justin Liebregts, Va says:

      The earths resources are limited. That is a fact. Even as the author says that "by raising children that care about conservation and reducing consumption" they are still consuming more than they did had they not been born. Now I know this sounds evil but to me it just doesn't make logical sense to have more than 2 kids in your family (replacing the mother and father).

      Don't get me wrong I LOVE big families. They're great. But I fear that if we keep going down the path of ignoring physical limitations of the planet that instead of creating more great beautiful babies we'll just be destroying ALL human life by extending beyond our means and collapsing our environment (everyone loses).

      It's like being on an island with 6 people and there's only enough food for 3 people to live. If you split the food up amongst all 6 people, then everyone will end up starving and dying. But if you give all the food to 3 people, then only 3 people die and 3 people live. This is terrible but the thing that's different about population control is that we have the CHOICE to put people onto the island. We can choose to put 6 people onto the island (by having many children) and everyone dies OR we can choose to not have big families and only put 3 people onto the island who ALL survive. If we have more children, then more people will die vs. having less children, where no one dies.

      Population control sucks, but it's better than self extinction. I don't think there could ever be a law that enforced population control, but the only thing one could hope is that reproductive culture and sustainability started to enforce social norms regarding family sizes. It's just like being nice to someone isn't a law, but it makes everyone happy and the more people who are nice to each other, the better everyone's lives are.

    36. Leslie says:

      We HAVE to start considering population control. It is well overdue. You bible scripture spewing brainless people can't even see what is obvious; overpopulation. We have encroached upon almost all of the landscapes throughout this country. Try looking at google maps. There are hardly any places left that aren't full of ugly cookie cutter neighborhoods. We have become accustomed to long lines and overcrowded places. We need a few generations of limiting family size to 1 child per family. (maybe 2) The world would be so much better.

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