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Over-population: A human-created problem

Posted by s v on Thu, Jun 28, 2018  
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CAUTION:  Anyone challenged to discuss controversial issues with an open mind may feel free to stop reading beyond this point

India is overcrowded; the world, probably.  Likely a moot point for some countries, but no sense diluting the reality for an important issue to be discussed about with concern for India.  For the harpers of their rights procreation may be, so also is having a sense of the reality. 

Desperate times call for desperate measures.  But the magnitude of multiplication is so out of control to even acutely influence the power and direction of the population momentum.  Inclusive development index by the World Economic Forum, an alternative to GDP evaluates a country’s economic progress.  No brownie points on guessing India’s ranking.  Rather than celebrating our being, it reflects that we are struggling to be.  Agreed, many countries need to work on this issue, but we as citizens of this country need to tidy up our own backyard for ourselves as well as our future generations who ARE actively affected by this human-made hazard of uncontrolled self-propagation; raison d’être, so potently habituated with religious undertones.

So, what do human dignity, respect for human life, human iatrogenesis, human greed, gambling, and human control have in common?  Yes, ‘humans’! 

Let’s start by looking at the good side of this matter.  Population can be an aid to the work force.  But are we talking about population?  Well, unapologetically it is over-population.  What we are looking at is the quantity without paying heed to the quality, a burden rather than an asset.  One big strength has in fact become a weakness.  The cost of sustaining such a populace is costly for the country. 

Quoting 18th century writer Samuel Johnson, “Pride is seldom delicate; it will please itself with very mean advantages”.  In its essence and of its nature, machoism and fecundity seem to have been the justifications to breed erratically.  Humans are irrational.  We create life but also have the wherewithal to self-destruct.  Legacies that each generation leaves for their next include human rights violation, exploitation, pollution, loss of habitat, consumption of finite natural resources, climate change, poverty, lack of water/food, restrictions on freedom (if one understands what it means and its significance on personal lives), mob mentality, lack of hygiene, spread of diseases, emergence of endemics / pandemics, failure to follow law, lack of quality education, lack of civic sense, compromised civility, unemployment, inflation, inequal distribution of income, adversely affected housing, healthcare, & transportation, more mouths to feed, dysfunctionality in governance to name a few that have progressively amplified with time.  These are the issues that directly affect us let alone curbed growth of country, brain drain, extinction of species, loss of ecosystem, human migration that we may not even bother to bother about, or even something as intangible as unhappiness.  Freedom to achieve well-being needs to be understood in terms of people’s capabilities and opportunities (Amartya Sen).  There is more to measurements of well-being than GDP.  Yardstick of well-being is not merely economic but also the non-quantifiable, happiness and a person’s satisfaction with life.  Happiness is an important intangible gift inherited down the generations. 

We are linked to nature through a complex system of checks and balances.  Humans, temporary residents on planet Earth need to be cognizant of the fact that we cannot keep on exploiting it for our gluttonous desires.  We need to awaken ourselves to the truth on timelessness of Mother Nature vs ephemeralness of us mortals as we go about ill-treating the environment.  In abusing nature, we are abusing ourselves.  R-E-S-P-E-C-T nature.  Quoting Gandhi, “There is sufficiency in the world for a man’s need but not for a man’s greed.” 

Somewhere along our history we seem to have lost our moral compass on this fundamental truth.  It is our moral obligation and incumbent upon us humans to treat all humans (read: our own offspring) with dignity.  Valuing ourselves, and our own beings is the basic thing we can do for our children and the future generation

Psychology of gambling states it to be a high-risk, low-yield proposition and not vice versa (as we fallaciously attribute it to be!).  If so, why do humans gamble?  Because it is in our society’s culture, our risk-taking attitudes, as well as the glamour that lies behind it.  Extrapolating, would those be reasons enough to justify high-stakes gambling that we humans are resorting to with our own future generation?  

Science has been able to reduce mortality rates thus prolonging human life.  Contrary to this, birth rates have exponentially increased.  Humans by nature are impulsive.   Uncontrolled breeding under the garb of religion, culture, or society is misquoted, misunderstood, and misinterpreted.  Propagation of human species is necessary though in a controlled, optimum way.

Treating others with dignity means acknowledging the other person’s worth, in this case the value of life of our own children, the next generation.  A right that inherently belongs to us.  Consequence of uncontrolled population is that we have lost respect for ourselves, respect for humans, respect for life.  Over-population is an issue of public concern wherein the government even though they have a duty to intervene would be sceptical as it would adversely affect their vote banks!

We humans have been endowed with an unbelievable instrument that we fail to use probably because we ‘think’ we are incapable enough, thus undermining our abilities to use that for our own betterment.  That instrument is our own brain.  Being human we all try to bargain hard with our justifications and logic.  Hope!  If we can reach a point wherein we sensitively are able to internalize the reality.  As humans we all tend to see from our vantage point, but to make a sense of this sensibility we need to shift focus on human worth, i.e. our own worth by taking a serious thought and purposeful action towards this step.  How are we going to take care of our future generations when we have made it so difficult to take care of our own selves, right now?  Let our intellect work knowledgeably for the furtherance of our species rather than destruction, which is what we are doing, very knowingly.  A right mindset needs to germinate in people’s minds that can come to fruition once we realize the value of our lives, human lives.  Hope we may be able to reduce human footprint and thus help children of the present as well as future by conducting our present actions knowingly and purposefully. 

This write-up is not meant to incite policing on birth control!  In fact, it may be taken as a rap on the head reinforcing, c’mon humans, LET US NOT GAMBLE WITH OUR and OUR CHILDREN’S FUTURE.  Let us make them proud heirs of a rational legacy.  It is late… wake up.

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