One of the frequent cries of many on the left is that the world is overpopulated. The latest hysterical outburst on this matter came from Sir David Attenborough, a recent patron of “The Optimum Population Trust.” The 86-year-old Attenborough, who has a degree in natural sciences and is a former senior manager of the BBC, is a high priest among earth-worshipping liberals.
Attenborough, famous mostly for his Life documentaries, declared “We are a plague on the Earth. It’s coming home to roost over the next 50 years or so. It’s not just climate change; it’s sheer space, places to grow food for this enormous horde. Either we limit our population growth or the natural world will do it for us...”
Nothing could be further from the truth. When it comes to “sheer space” and “places to grow food,” we have barely touched what the earth has available. Given that the earth contains just north of 7 billion people, the entire population of the planet could easily fit into the state of Texas, which contains less than .14% of the earth’s land area.
The overpopulation myth has been around for decades. It even predates the holy grail of modern liberal environmental orthodoxy: global warming. With liberals today, the overpopulation myth (as with most everything even remotely tied to the environment) is typically predicated upon the myth of man-made global warming.
As an illustration of this, the Grand Mystic Royal Noble of the Ali Baba Temple of the Church of Global Warming—Al Gore—recently tweeted: “In the next 17 years, [the population] of the global middle class will grow by 3 [billion] people. How will we accommodate them on a finite planet?”
Noble (or “Nobel”) Al is so concerned about the prospect of man-made global warming, to reduce the amount of hot-air radiating from the U.S., he sold his media company (Current Media) to the Al Jazeera Media Network. This would have been a smart move for Noble Al, except for the fact that Al Jazeera is a state-owned media corporation.
And not just any state, but the extremely oil rich monarchy that is Qatar. Now, it is not so surprising that a liberal such as Noble Al sold himself out (for about $100 million) to a media corporation that former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld called a “mouthpiece of al Qaeda and a vehicle of anti-American propaganda.” Neither is it surprising that Noble Al would enrich himself by doing business with an authoritarian regime.
What is surprising is that Ali Baba Al would enrich himself with oil money. Not only that, but filthy oil money (by Ali Baba Al standards). At about 44 metric tons per person (2009 numbers), Qatar has had the highest per-capita carbon dioxide emissions in the world for decades, and it’s not even close. Qatar has about 50% more per capita emissions that the next highest nation and has more than double the U.S. per capita carbon dioxide emissions (17.2 metric tons).
In addition to all of this, Qatar is rather “overpopulated.” Its population density of 394 people per square mile (compared to 89 per square mile in the U.S.) puts it 76 (out of 243) on the list of sovereign states and dependent territories by population density.
Of course, to limit populations, one must reduce the number of newborns. This leads to another pillar of liberalism: abortion. In order to preach such hedonism to the world, the U.N. gave us World Population Day where they boldly declare, “The human enterprise has outgrown the planet.”
The Russians sure seem to believe it. A recent Drudge headline reveals that, instead of elevating a murderous dictator to reduce the population, the Russians have fully prostrated themselves at the bloody alter of abortion. In the Motherland, “abortion is rampant,” says Jonathan V. Last, author of What to Expect When No One’s Expecting.
Noting what is perhaps “the most grisly statistic the world has ever seen,” Last points out that in Russia, for every 10 live births, there are 13 abortions. Yet Russia is 223 in population density. Combine this with a paltry birthrate of 12.6 per 1,000 and the Russians are staring at a devastating population decline. “No nation has experienced long-term prosperity in the face of contracting population,” concludes Last.
Liberal myths abound: the world is overpopulated, fossil fuels are heating the planet, abortion is a “right,” homosexuality is normal and healthy, all life “evolved,” marriage can be redefined, a nation can spend its way out of debt, and so on. Notice the similarities? Each of these is a relatively recent conclusion once unheard of or (even worse) thought absurd and wicked.
Such it is with post-modern liberalism. Thinking themselves masters of science and reason, and ignoring absolute truth, they have become what they despise: “the faithful.”
Trevor Thomas resides in Gainesville, GA with his wife and four small children. He has a bachelor’s degree in physics and two graduate degrees in mathematics education. He has taught high school mathematics in public and private schools for the last 17 years and has written opinion columns for the last nine years. www.trevorgrantthomas.com
The CJS Forum seeks to promote an open exchange of ideas about the relationship between faith, culture, law and public policy. While all the articles are original and written especially for the CJS Forum, they do not necessarily reflect the views of the Center for a Just Society.