The Culture of Death Isn’t Sustainable. Our Future Depends on a Culture of Life.
Everybody likes a good apocalypse. The thought of an imminent end of the world gives a certain pungency and urgency to life.
For some Protestants the Lord Jesus is going to return in glory and all the true believers will be raptured. Catholics of a certain type focus on the prophecies of Fatima and apparitions of Mary the mother of Jesus.
Secularists have their own apocalyptic stories. At the end of the last century the millennium bug was going to cause a global meltdown. Forty years before that an exchange of A-bombs was going to obliterate humanity. Then the “population bomb” was going to bring us to the brink. The doom merchants said the world would be so over crowded that we’d be standing shoulder to shoulder fighting for food.
The present apocalypse craze is climate change. The bizarre thing is, while liberals bite their nails and predict the extinction of the human race because of global warming, they are ignoring another very real human disaster: the demographic winter.
In 2016 America recorded the lowest fertility rate in history. Plummeting from 3.6 kids per woman in 1960, the 2016 rate was just 1.7. That’s well below the replacement level. The fact is, in the long term, Americans seem to be facing extinction. No wonder Toys R Us went out of business. There aren’t enough kids to buy toys for.
Liberals are not only ignoring the falling birth rate, they seem to be applauding it. In a punchy article at the website Medium, Ryan DeLongpre links to a collection of articles about antinatalism, which is a long word for “having kids is immoral and bad.”
In this article at NBC, scientist Travis Rieder argues that having a baby is “one of the worst things you can do for the environment.” Meanwhile, at the New York Times, Lisa Belkin complains that children make you unhappy. At the Washington Post, psychologist Matthew Johnson says kids are bad for your marriage. I guess we shouldn’t be surprised that people who are okay with aborting children up to birth think having babies is a bad idea. The simple truth is the culture of death will die. How can a movement survive that doesn’t reproduce?
Conservatives Have Kids
Anybody who has been on the March for Life can see the pro-life crowd is bigger, younger and stronger. It’s obvious: Conservatives have kids. Liberals don’t. Therefore, before too long there are going to be more conservatives than liberals.
DeLongpre found some statistics on fertility rates that hammer it home:
- Extremely Liberal — fertility rate: 1.61
- Liberal — 1.72
- Slightly Liberal — 1.58
- Moderate — 2.14
- Slightly Conservative — 2.03
- Conservative — 2.34
- Extremely Conservative — 2.62
Liberals have seen the numbers and know they don’t lie.
That’s why they are so enthusiastic about open borders. Instead of having their own kids they want to import some.
It’s the same in Europe. The fertility rate there is even lower than the USA. European liberals need an immigrant workforce to keep their show on the road. They not only need workers for their infrastructure and factories, they also need doctors and nurses. They know the birth rate is dropping. They realize as they get old there aren’t going to be enough young people to look after them.
But immigration won’t solve the problem. There won’t be enough skilled health care workers. The immigrants will have their own old people to look after. Even if there are enough workers, the money will run out. As long as bottom line, short term, cost-effective, pragmatic solutions are the only philosophy that drives policy, more ominous solutions will be looming.
Old People: A Bad Idea?
The wolves of euthanasia are lurking at the door. If an old woman has lost her marbles, her “quality of life” will be assessed. If no one visits an old man in assisted living because he never had kids, the doctors will ask why he ought to go on living. Most important for a society that only judges according to the bottom line: If the old person has run out of money the hospital authorities and social workers will be all too willing to help them find “a painless end of life solution.”
If they never had children, who will be there to stop the authorities from pulling the plug or giving the injection? The generation of liberals who thought having kids was a bad idea will be faced with a generation of doctors who think having old people is a bad idea. Such a nightmare scenario is indeed an apocalypse.
There has to be a better way.
The Pro-Life Solution
If there are going to be more conservatives, then it is up to that new majority to step up with positive solutions. The positive solution is the pro-life solution. What if we faced the demographic winter head on and the government shifted the millions given to Planned Parenthood into organizations that supported families instead of abortion?
What if the funding for Planned Parenthood was directed to health care for single moms who chose life? What if they moved the abortion money to subsidize families who adopt and foster kids? What if legislators voted to underwrite the cost of adoption?
What if our schools offered marriage education instead of sex education? What if large families were given bigger tax breaks, and employers provided better health insurance for big families?
What if our local communities, charities and churches went even further in living out the culture of life? What if our churches became extended families — offering compassion, care and support for all their members from the moment of conception to natural death?
Then instead of an apocalypse we’d have an abundant life and a positive future.
Read Dwight Longenecker’s blog, listen to his podcasts, browse his books and be in touch at dwightlongenecker.com