PHILOSOPHICAL RANTS#14: Population Ethics

Overpopulation is, in my opinion, the biggest problem facing mankind. It lies behind many of our other problems – environmental devastation, mass extinctions, world poverty, unemployment, mass migration, terrorism, drought, climate change and war.
It is time that we looked into ethical ways of controlling it and put aside this ridiculous mantra of growth at all costs. Putting profit before common sense is not intelligent.

Inverted logic


Often times we come across conundrums and other dilemmas that veer into volatile territory, where it is imperative to be nuanced and tactful in your observations. The topic of population ethics, would probably be a prime example of such a topic that we need to tread lightly with. While some my surmise that my caution is unfounded and a byproduct of the slippery slope fallacy of logic. However, it is important to be responsible with our assertions and to gingerly navigate and address potential ramifications. While I believe we should be cautious of the dangers of overpopulating the Earth, we cannot let such apprehensions should not be manifested into public policy. That would be catastrophic failure as free western democracy to do as such. In regards to procreative quotas and limitations that should never be dictate by the state, but ascertained by private individuals. Abhorrent policies such as the…

View original post 1,402 more words

10 thoughts on “PHILOSOPHICAL RANTS#14: Population Ethics

  1. It’s really good to see some serious discussion on this issue. It’s something I’ve thought about a lot. Anyone I’ve mentioned it to often immediately starts talking eugenics and I’m put off pursuing it. China’s prior policy often comes up too.

    1. I get the same reaction Safar. But it really isn’t about eugenics or even draconian policies like the Chinese have done. But they seem to have got themselves sorted.
      I think that if we took steps to raise people out of extreme poverty, provide the safety nets of pensions and social payments for illness the fertility rates would tumble. We also have to overcome certain religious and social taboos towards contraception and educate girls!
      There is much that could be done. Overpopulation is responsible for so much of the environmental and social problems. It is number one for me.

      1. I agree with what you’ve suggested too – especially the education of girls and accessibility and challenging attitudes towards contraception. I also think that having more control and choice over one’s own death is also something that needs to be considered.

      2. Safar – you mean being able to auto-euthanize? I would be in agreement on that but I’m not sure that would really impact on population size.

  2. Totally on board with ya, Opher. In fact, this is what our Sunday School class was about last Sunday. It’s sure a loaded opic, but one that has to be dealt with or it will be to our detriment.

      1. Some solutions to things seem so simple. I was watching a documentary on carbon emissions the other day and how much carbon trees scrub from the air. Now that we’ve cut down so many trees that amount has become less and less and, of course, the carbon is building up. But they’ve figured out if you leave the chaff on the ground (winnowing) instead of plowing it under when you harvest your crops, within 10 years the the soil will go from filtering 2% of the emissions to 10%. But farmers seem to be resistant to trying it even though it’s been proven.

  3. Life has shown me that human beings are neither intelligent nor rational. They are creatures of habit who get fixed opinions regardless of the facts. I despair.

I'd like to hear from you...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.