The following passage appears in a post by Clare Halpine over at NRO:
Much of our culture today is predicated upon our belief that overpopulation is the root cause of the world’s ills. Consider these statements, which have recently graced the pages of learned tomes, the first from a New York Times commentary:
“Our failure to regulate the human population ensures a future of environmental toxicity including genotoxicity, disease, famine, warfare, and massive social upheaval . . .”
And from Jonathan Last’s book, What to Expect When No One’s Expecting:
“Children are actually an impediment to economic and social success . . .”
The theory of overpopulation informs our view of life so fundamentally that although no one really knows what genotoxicity is, and children are not typically birthed for reasons of social climbing, we live schizophrenically: rejoicing in birth notifications and baby shower e-vites from our friends, while feeling guilty for being accessory to what we have been told is the selfish act of reproduction.
Really? I’m not sure if this is a misreading or a mischaracterization of WTE. Or inelegant writing.
Btw, I’m not sure where that quote she ascribes to me is from. It’s not in the book and it’s not in the interview she links to. Entirely possible I’ve said it somewhere, but what the book says (and the formulation I try to use, not always successful) is that we have “a system where economic and social success are largely dependent on not having children.” Which is a very different connotation.
(I used a similar formulation in a 2006 piece: “We have reached a point where children are actually an impediment to economic and social success.”
Or maybe she’s just the first person to come away from What to Expect thinking that I’m selling the dangers of overpopulation.