Human Exceptionalism

Radical Environmentalism Hates Humans

I have been discussing the anti-humanism of radical environmentalism for some time now here at SHS, that is, the idea that humans are the enemies of the planet and we must depopulate dramatically or the planet might die. This meme has been adopted by the global warming crowd too. For example, in the UK, an influential adviser on environmental issues–apparently indifferent to the murderous eugenics policies of China’s notorious one child policy–advocated that the UK adopt a two child policy and increase the abortion rate as a way of reducing carbon dioxide output.

And now, a new study from the University of Oregon supports the idea of not having children as a way to cut our carbon footprints. From the story:

For people who are looking for ways to reduce their “carbon footprint,” here’s one radical idea that could have a big long-term impact, some scientists say: Have fewer kids. A study by statisticians at Oregon State University concluded that in the United States, the carbon legacy and greenhouse gas impact of an extra child is almost 20 times more important than some of the other environment-friendly practices people might employ during their entire lives – things like driving a high mileage car, recycling, or using energy-efficient appliances and light bulbs…

Reproductive choices haven’t gained as much attention in the consideration of human impact to the Earth, Murtaugh said. When an individual produces a child – and that child potentially produces more descendants in the future – the effect on the environment can be many times the impact produced by a person during their lifetime.

The good professors state they don’t want any laws requiring small families. But the likelihood that many people will heed the call and sacrifice the size of their family over something as ephemeral as a carbon footprint is remote–at least in sufficient numbers to make a difference even if the hypothesis is true. 

And here’s the thing: Misanthropic environmentalism is moving ever deeper into the mainstream, and in fact, has been accepted whole cloth by many among what my generation used to call “The Establishment.”  Indeed, the weather has become an ever ready excuse for imposing ever-more intrusive and controlling policies intended to impede human flourishing, or tax human enterprise. And with the increasing tendency to personalize floura and fauna–as we depersonalize the most vulnerable humans–the worry that draconian population control policies could one day be imposed on society based on carbon dioxide is not all that paranoid.

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