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Shining Raichu
August 12th, 2011, 01:16 AM
That got your attention, didn’t it?

Before you lynch me, hear me out. I’m well aware that having children is necessary to the continuity of the human race. That said, population growth scares me. We are simply growing the population of the world far too fast, and it will get to the stage where there won’t be enough food, water or room for everybody.

This much is well-known, yet there are who people continue to crank out kids like they’ve got nothing better to do with their time. If they are doing this for no other reason than the desire to be parents, is this selfish? Are they considering only their own desires and not the needs of the greater population in a future world where there won’t be enough resources for anybody to fulfil their needs? Furthermore, is it inconsiderate to the new children themselves who will have to live in this world? Do you believe that holding back on having children is the solution for this problem?

It's also worthwhile to note that the desire to be parents could be satisfied by adoption, rather than creating a whole new mouth to feed from scratch.

Discuss.

Myles
August 12th, 2011, 02:10 AM
Ugh, saying we can't have kids would be infringing on human rights. I guess you could make a case for if people had more than a kid each (two for two parents).

But I'm not sure you could really put the overgrowth in terms like that anyway. Since countries right now seem to be very strict on borders, in countries that can easily take more people like Australia, there doesn't seem to be a need to limit. But limiting in China or India would be necessary. Or they could loosen immigration laws.

Onyx_X
August 12th, 2011, 02:45 AM
I can't say, in honesty, that I would call it selfish. It is certainly a rash decision, but then the heart doesn't think. The metaphorical one, not the blood-pumping one, of course.
I personally would adopt, but I'm a...not looking for a female companion, so that narrows my choices a bit, doesn't it? The problem here is, if a man never has a child of his own, his family line ends when it ends, unless he has a brother who is having children, or a sister, or he banks some sperm for future use. Now we come back to that irritating, metaphorical organ, the heart: people want to see their offspring grow into an independent being. Why? Because of emotional attachment.

Freedom Fighter N
August 12th, 2011, 02:54 AM
I'm not sure that if I have two kids like I'm planning, three if I'm getting carried away, or four if my wife is hypersexual is going to make a big difference.

This much is well-known, yet there are who people continue to crank out kids like they’ve got nothing better to do with their time.
I doubt this is the average, rational family that knows one child is already a big upkeep. Combine that with your wife, goddamnit.. but that's irrelevant. In fact I doubt the average family has three kids, and anything above is probably uncommon. I didn't look at statistics, but I think it's safe to assume what I just said.
Damn I got to a more financial point of view. I really should do something with going offtopic.

If they are doing this for no other reason than the desire to be parents, is this selfish?
They're already parents with one child. How much children do you need to classify yourself as a parent?
Also, if we're talking about selfishness.. I'm pretty sure religious people (and I mean religious, not the "I do what fits with my lifestyle" idiots who claim to be religious.) fall into the selfish part, not because of being a parent but rather to serve god or something like that. It also goes well with the first question.

Are they considering only their own desires and not the needs of the greater population in a future world where there won’t be enough resources for anybody to fulfil their needs?
What is this, Soviet Russia? Why does rich people do not give money for people with a worse financial state?
There's the "OK, I can give up this for community/environment/whatever", but kids are actually a ^%^% huge deal.

It's also worthwhile to note that the desire to be parents could be satisfied by adoption, rather than creating a whole new mouth to feed from scratch.
And it's also worthwhile to note that there is a difference between your own child to a child you adopted. I'm stopping here because that worthwhile note pisses me off.

Oryx
August 12th, 2011, 03:29 AM
And it's also worthwhile to note that there is a difference between your own child to a child you adopted. I'm stopping here because that worthwhile note pisses me off.

This is the whole point of the thread, imo. Is it selfish to want to have a child so it can be a "part" of you, when so many children are struggling through terrible living situations in orphanages and under government care and could be saved if you chose to adopt them instead of bringing another child into the world?

In my opinion, yes, it is selfish. In the end, you choose not to help that struggling child to make yourself feel better, because you want a child that's "yours". But not all selfish is unacceptable. It's selfish to buy steak that you don't need when people are starving in Africa. It's selfish to be upset about not being able to go on a vacation one year when some people down the street are homeless. But this is socially acceptable selfishness; no one expects you to give up all luxuries to help people starving around the world, and no one expects you to not care about any problems you may have because someone else has a worse one.

Having a child of your own is what I like to call "acceptable selfishness". If you want to be the perfect, most unselfish person on the face of the Earth, then adopt children into your tiny house (because you donate all your money to starving Africans) even if you want to have your own children. But I wouldn't judge anyone as more selfish than anyone else because they choose to have children over adopting.

Shining Raichu
August 12th, 2011, 03:52 AM
What is this, Soviet Russia? Why does rich people do not give money for people with a worse financial state?

Yeah alright, calm down Robin Hood. I should note that by 'resources' I did not mean financial resources, I meant physical resources. Food, water, space. The Earth is not infinite. In fact, I think if the world were to come to this, finances would be the least of all our worries.

twocows
August 12th, 2011, 04:08 AM
Ugh, saying we can't have kids would be infringing on human rights. I guess you could make a case for if people had more than a kid each (two for two parents).
How is having children a human right?

Personally, I see no problem with providing incentives for people to have fewer children. I think it's a great way to reign in overpopulation.

mameshiba
August 12th, 2011, 04:17 AM
China is already doing that. One kid a family, because people over there prefer male babies, due to the shortage of females, soon millions Chinese men can no longer find a Chinese girlfriend, which would definitely hurt their population growth.

Myles
August 12th, 2011, 04:46 AM
How is having children a human right?

Personally, I see no problem with providing incentives for people to have fewer children. I think it's a great way to reign in overpopulation.

Reproduction is a basic function of life. In some definitions of life, not being able to reproduce could practically exclude you from the definition being alive. The fact that you're individual cells can reproduce inside your body is probably the only thing that would save you.

From an evolutionary stand point, the meaning of life is basically reproduction after all. :X

Edit:

Here we go (http://www.un.org/en/documents/udhr/#a16). In the United Nations' Universal Declaration of Human Rights that every country (except Vatican City and Taiwan if memory serves) has agreed to:


Article 16.
(1) Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution.
(2) Marriage shall be entered into only with the free and full consent of the intending spouses.
(3) The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State.


One can assume that they would think that includes having children.

Blue Nocturne
August 12th, 2011, 06:11 AM
I'd rather adopt than have a child, I don't want to add to the worlds problems by bring more people into it (and if I end up with a guy, have to waste a lot of time and resources). But that's just me. I know if I end up with someone who really wants a baby of his/her own, then I'm happy to go along with it. Similarly, if you want children, go ahead. As long as they're not starving because there's no food left.

Mr. X
August 12th, 2011, 09:07 AM
Is it selfish to have children? No.

Is it a good idea to have a lot of them? No.

I'm all for having limits on children. Having a enforced one birth per family law in effect for... hmm... 40 years would go a long way for controling our poplulation. I say birth, not children, because sometimes two or more are popped out at once.

The only way this law could be effectively enforced is if the woman gets 'fixed' after the birth.

Radical? Yes. Needed if this planet will survive? Yah. The way things are now it will only be around 50 years before this planet can't support any more life, unless we have a drastic cut in the amount of people on it. (By my above suguestion... Or another World War, perhaps one where all the super powers hate each other guts. That will get the population down real fast.)

Liliana Vess
August 12th, 2011, 09:25 AM
I'm all for having limits on children, do people really need to have 5+ children? were not exactly near extinction we don't need to repopulate. I'm even more for pushing for adoption instead of having a whole new child.
Also, something popped into my head while i was looking through this thread. Maybe being gay is like evolutions way of slowing down the population growth of the human race?

Melody
August 12th, 2011, 11:11 AM
No, it isn't selfish. But it isn't wise neither to keep popping out children like they're going outta style.

But that's a person's and a couple's right. If they want to have 30 children, let them do so if they can support them. Else, there really is no need to have more than what they can financially support and proper penalties should be assessed for parents who have more children than they can afford to care for. Personally I think something like being rendered infertile should take care of it...if they've gone too far over the limit.
(Having like 3 children when there is only proper income for 1)

Other than that...there isn't a reason to limit people. As long as you can prevent idiots from creating more "wards of state", drawing too much welfare, or shirking their parental duties then the major problems have been solved.

Sure, a court order to be rendered infertile along with possible jail time IS harsh...but I'd reserve that only for the worst offenders. Not the couples who just got a little too amorous and accidentally popped out Got blessed with twins.

Esper
August 12th, 2011, 11:32 AM
When it's not an accident I think most people have children for selfish reasons so I would say that usually it is selfish. They want someone to love them, they want someone to care for, they want someone to care for them when they're old, etc. I don't think everyone considers the full implications for the child itself.

So you see people having kids when they are in debt and already have a kid, but they don't want to wait on having that second kid because then their kids will be too far apart in age, as if that's more important than making sure they can afford to raise their kids well, or they want to make sure they get that second kid made before they get too old when maybe it'll be harder to have kids and completely ignoring the option of just having one kid. They'd be putting their own desires ahead of what would be best for their kids.

One can assume that they would think that includes having children.
A family doesn't necessitate children. A married couple is a family. Three adult siblings living in the same house and caring for their cousin is a family. But more to the point, it says that people can have a family, but it doesn't say they can have that family in any way their hearts desire. Someone with 12 kids and no means of supporting them is causing harm and shouldn't be allowed to have more children. Only allowing people to adopt after their first biological child wouldn't prevent someone from having a family either. It would just limit the forms their family could take. I'm not going to say where to draw the line, but there is a line between acceptable and unacceptable limits.

Maybe being gay is like evolutions way of slowing down the population growth of the human race?
Doubtful. Evolution isn't a goal-oriented process.

TRIFORCE89
August 12th, 2011, 12:41 PM
If you choose to become parents you end up sacrificing a lot for your children. I don't see how that's selfish.

Osiris
August 12th, 2011, 01:39 PM
I don't really believe it is selfish, I believe it's just human nature.

In places that are extremely over-populated (such as China and India), I do believe there should be some way to control the amount of births, because it's getting out of hand too quickly. I agree with twocows in that there should be some incentive for having less children, especially in areas like this.

However, I understand why there was a need to have many children in the past, especially with agricultural families that needed as many hands as they could get to help out. In modern society, though, I don't really see a reason why someone would want to have a substantial amount of children (1-3 should be fine).

God
August 12th, 2011, 02:03 PM
Some people just love the joy that children bring into their lives that they want to have as many kids as possible, whether that be selfish or not. It doesn't matter if it's selfish to have a lot of children, but if they're good parents to them. And besides, you give up so much to have a child so really, you're being the opposite of selfish.

I do understand the need for population control in areas like India and China, and I believe giving incentives to not have children is fine. But in the end, having children isn't selfish. It's just a way of life.

Ascaris
August 12th, 2011, 02:34 PM
population isnt too much of an issue in general. in which i mean its solvable. its an issue in that god knows if you can ever get people to solve it but it IS perfectly solvable. there is enough food in the world right now to feed everybody comfortably, and food production could be feasibly expanded considerably. i doubt that the peak of the human population will truly overtax the earth in terms of food, it just depends whether or not anyone is able to implement the solutions which do exist. clean water is a bigger issue but with enough funding and concentration im sure various science programs could take care of that reasonably well.

rate of growth itself is decreasing and should level off before long

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_population

if you want to reply to this just to dispute wikipedia as a source then kindly piss off

2Cool4Mewtwo
August 12th, 2011, 03:00 PM
Reproduction is part of many people's lives, so no.

Anders
August 12th, 2011, 03:17 PM
If you want to be absolutely literal then yes it's selfish to want a kid. It's a means of living for some people and their happiness. But being serious no it's not, because you guys are approaching it with a negative stigma as if somebody is a bad person for having or wanting a kid because they could adopt or because you think the world is severely overpopulated and on the brink of destruction. That might be true for China but not America. As for adopting, I don't consider my mom bad for having me, sorry. Maybe some of you think your real parents are selfish people but I don't.

Oryx
August 12th, 2011, 03:28 PM
If you want to be absolutely literal then yes it's selfish to want a kid. It's a means of living for some people and their happiness. But being serious no it's not, because you guys are approaching it with a negative stigma as if somebody is a bad person for having or wanting a kid because they could adopt or because you think the world is severely overpopulated and on the brink of destruction. That might be true for China but not America. As for adopting, I don't consider my mom bad for having me, sorry. Maybe some of you think your real parents are selfish people but I don't.

The point I was making with my post is that it is selfish in a way that every human is selfish, and not in a way that makes them a bad person. That's why I used the example of buying a steak instead of buying cheap chicken or rice and donating the difference to starving people in Africa; sure it's selfish to enjoy luxuries like steak when there are people dying all over the world, but it's not a selfishness that's considered 'bad' in any way. It's selfish in a distant way, even if you know that you could be indirectly killing a person by not donating money, they're very far away from you so it doesn't affect you whatsoever and it shouldn't. If you let every death in the world affect you, you would end up penniless from donating money tbh.

Everyone is selfish to some point, there is no one that's entirely selfless. If you think your parents are then you must think they're some kind of god, because I have certainly never met an entirely selfless person. Just because you can admit that your parents aren't completely selfless doesn't mean you think they're a bad person or love them any less.

Tbh I think the people talking about how much sacrifice a child takes are missing the point. Those sacrifices would be made whether you gave birth to a child or adopted one, so it doesn't really apply. The only extra sacrifices made would be the 9 months of childbearing, which is minimal compared to the sacrifice of actually caring for a child.

Anders
August 12th, 2011, 03:55 PM
Tbh I think the people talking about how much sacrifice a child takes are missing the point. Those sacrifices would be made whether you gave birth to a child or adopted one, so it doesn't really apply. The only extra sacrifices made would be the 9 months of childbearing, which is minimal compared to the sacrifice of actually caring for a child.

Edited out the rest of your post because it's a two paragraph description of what I was implying with my first two sentences. In short I agree so I don't see why you reiterated.

Responding to this part because I never said my parents were perfect or selfless. I said that they weren't selfish for having me because they didn't even expect to have me in the first place, and even if they did it wouldn't fit the definition of selfish that this thread seems geared towards, when it's more like the selfish you described.

Oryx
August 12th, 2011, 04:10 PM
Hahaha how do you manage to type this much when the only thing in my post relating to you or anything you just posted is adoption? I'm not gonna type you a tl;dr answering all of these things that have nothing to do with what I posted, but I will address you saying that I think people are perfect and whatever. I never said that, I didn't say that about my parents either. I said they weren't bad or selfish in the way that people are suggesting in this thread pertaining to having a kid aka me. I don't even know how you came to the conclusion that I think they're perfect.

Not all of that was directed towards you, in particular the last paragraph was a general statement to the thread. I replied because most of the posts are saying that it's not selfish (in fact, only one person other than myself said it was outright selfish), so your rebuttal of why it's not would obviously be directed at the people that said it was. It's not rocket science to see why I replied to you.

You said "Maybe some of you think your real parents are selfish people but I don't". It's very reasonable to assume that when you say you don't think your parents are selfish, with no qualifying statements, that you think they...well, aren't selfish. It was a very straightforward statement, if you meant "I don't think they were being selfish in having me", that would mean something different. I can only go off of what you say, not what you were thinking when you said it. :P

Phantom
August 12th, 2011, 04:13 PM
Can I just say what is natural is natural?

Bluerang1
August 12th, 2011, 04:14 PM
Flame me baby! Because I was thinking that those living in extreme poverty really shouldn't bring children into their world just to suffer like they do. Maybe they hope for a silver lining, I don't know. If you can't take care of the child, don't have it is what i think. But that's against human rights.

Anders
August 12th, 2011, 04:19 PM
You said "Maybe some of you think your real parents are selfish people but I don't". It's very reasonable to assume that when you say you don't think your parents are selfish, with no qualifying statements, that you think they...well, aren't selfish. It was a very straightforward statement, if you meant "I don't think they were being selfish in having me", that would mean something different. I can only go off of what you say, not what you were thinking when you said it. :P

You really didn't know I was talking about having me when referring to my parents in the thread about having children?

Mr. X
August 12th, 2011, 04:27 PM
While the population growth rate is projected to decline, this won't effect the number of undernourished people in the world.

From your wikipedia article,
"The observed figures for 2007 show an actual increase in absolute numbers of undernourished people in the world, 923 million in 2007 versus 832 million in 1995.;[110] the more recent FAO estimates point out to an even more dramatic increase, to 1.02 billion in 2009."

So, while the growth rate might be going down these numbers won't, This is why we need birth limits for every country. You can have one birth. and if you want more kids then adopt them.

Also, 2cool. Most people now don't care for reproduction. They just want sex.

and to mameshiba. This is from wikipedia.
"A spokesperson of the Committee on the One-Child Policy has said that approximately 35.9% of China's population is currently subject to the one-child restriction."

Emolga
August 12th, 2011, 11:41 PM
I think that some parents have children so that they can obtain money for well-fair. This is very selfish, in a bad way. These parents usual do not even spend enough of the money on what the kids need.

But for the most part, I think that it is emotionally/phsically/finacially draining to have kids, so I do think it is selfish.

Freedom Fighter N
August 13th, 2011, 03:06 AM
This is the whole point of the thread, imo. Is it selfish to want to have a child so it can be a "part" of you, when so many children are struggling through terrible living situations in orphanages and under government care and could be saved if you chose to adopt them instead of bringing another child into the world?

In my opinion, yes, it is selfish. In the end, you choose not to help that struggling child to make yourself feel better, because you want a child that's "yours". But not all selfish is unacceptable. It's selfish to buy steak that you don't need when people are starving in Africa. It's selfish to be upset about not being able to go on a vacation one year when some people down the street are homeless. But this is socially acceptable selfishness; no one expects you to give up all luxuries to help people starving around the world, and no one expects you to not care about any problems you may have because someone else has a worse one.

Having a child of your own is what I like to call "acceptable selfishness". If you want to be the perfect, most unselfish person on the face of the Earth, then adopt children into your tiny house (because you donate all your money to starving Africans) even if you want to have your own children. But I wouldn't judge anyone as more selfish than anyone else because they choose to have children over adopting.
You're going too far with the "selfishness" here. I can't really take all those things into account and say no because they don't have it.

Yeah alright, calm down Robin Hood. I should note that by 'resources' I did not mean financial resources, I meant physical resources. Food, water, space. The Earth is not infinite. In fact, I think if the world were to come to this, finances would be the least of all our worries.
First of all, Robin Hood is a damn thief and I hate him like all thieves.
Second, I know what you meant by resources. I was just giving an example why it's not selfish.

2Cool4Mewtwo
August 13th, 2011, 07:06 AM
Also, 2cool. Most people now don't care for reproduction. They just want sex.
It's called protection...

I really fail to see how having a child is selfish in any way. Can someone enlighten me on this? (not being sarcastic)

Gold warehouse
August 13th, 2011, 08:01 AM
If we want to be strict about selfishness here, is it not selfish to do 90% of the things we do? Every time you drive a car, eat a meal that's slightly expensive, buy a luxury item, or basically do anything that isn't necessary for survival, someone can call you selfish. You could have given money spent on that to someone that's homeless or starving, but let's be realistic here...

Using selfish in the 'rich westerner' sense, no it isn't selfish to have children as long as you're having them for the right reasons. It's more selfish to try and tell people they shouldn't be having kids. It is a very nice idea to put nature and the environment before us, but it's not going to happen. I could say that I'm not going to have kids because it's bad for the environment, but whilst I'm doing that nobody else gives a **** about being eco-friendly. I live my life for me. Like Ascaris said, it's an issue that can be dealt with, but it's not my duty to look out for overpopulation.

But then again, more people have children for the "wrong" reasons. Not even going to write a rant on that again.

TRIFORCE89
August 13th, 2011, 10:43 AM
While the population growth rate is projected to decline, this won't effect the number of undernourished people in the world.

From your wikipedia article,
"The observed figures for 2007 show an actual increase in absolute numbers of undernourished people in the world, 923 million in 2007 versus 832 million in 1995.;[110] the more recent FAO estimates point out to an even more dramatic increase, to 1.02 billion in 2009."

So, while the growth rate might be going down these numbers won't, This is why we need birth limits for every country. You can have one birth. and if you want more kids then adopt them.
In every country, really? Because they're overpopulated over there, we have to take a hit over here? Why?

twocows
August 13th, 2011, 03:47 PM
Reproduction is a basic function of life. In some definitions of life, not being able to reproduce could practically exclude you from the definition being alive. The fact that you're individual cells can reproduce inside your body is probably the only thing that would save you.

From an evolutionary stand point, the meaning of life is basically reproduction after all. :X
That's a naturalistic fallacy. Simply because we have the capability to reproduce does not mean we should. We have the capacity to kill, as well, but I think we're all agreed that we shouldn't be doing that so much.

As for that definition of yours, I'd like to point out that Mules cannot reproduce. I'm pretty sure they're still considered "alive." There are also people who are sterile; they're also alive. And as for reproduction being the "meaning of life" from an evolutionary standpoint, that's another naturalistic fallacy. Evolution favors anyone who reproduces like crazy and manages to keep their children alive, but I hardly think that's what most people are going to want to do.

Edit:

Here we go (http://www.un.org/en/documents/udhr/#a16). In the United Nations' Universal Declaration of Human Rights that every country (except Vatican City and Taiwan if memory serves) has agreed to:



One can assume that they would think that includes having children.
I guess I'll be disagreeing with the United Nations, then. I don't see any reason why it should be a right. People are able to live perfectly normal, happy lives without children. Limits on the number of children a family can have would not cause a great deal of suffering to people (at worst, they'd be a bit upset, but when aren't people upset?).

icomeanon6
August 13th, 2011, 06:27 PM
I guess I'll be disagreeing with the United Nations, then. I don't see any reason why it should be a right. People are able to live perfectly normal, happy lives without children. Limits on the number of children a family can have would not cause a great deal of suffering to people (at worst, they'd be a bit upset, but when aren't people upset?).
I may be out of line, but I have to say that the notion that something is disqualified from being a right just because people can live perfectly normal, happy lives without it offends me like few others. It makes me sad to think that I know people who risked their lives to escape from communist East Germany just to find that basic liberty is on the table in the western nations as well. In my mind, a nation that claims to have indiscriminate and ultimate authority on whether or not its citizens can have children is one that holds its population in slavery.

2Cool4Mewtwo
August 13th, 2011, 06:51 PM
That's a naturalistic fallacy. Simply because we have the capability to reproduce does not mean we should. We have the capacity to kill, as well, but I think we're all agreed that we shouldn't be doing that so much.
If every human on the face of the Earth goes with the bolded part and not reproduce, then humans will be extinct in next about... 100 years. Is that what you actually want?

Also, Reproducing and murder is the polar opposite of each other. One begins a new life, and one ends an existing life. Using an example that is completely opposite of what you're applying your example to isn't the best way to back up your opinion, methinks.


As for overpopulation, I'm not worried because I'm not living in a country where overpopulation is a problem, so my views on the original question would differ from what "should be ideal" in overpopulated countries.

Windie
August 13th, 2011, 06:59 PM
Raising a child is one of the most selfless, difficult tasks in the world, so no, I wouldn't say it's selfish. Having lots of kids just for the sake of having lots of kids? That, I can't respect.

Myles
August 13th, 2011, 07:38 PM
That's a naturalistic fallacy. Simply because we have the capability to reproduce does not mean we should. We have the capacity to kill, as well, but I think we're all agreed that we shouldn't be doing that so much.

As for that definition of yours, I'd like to point out that Mules cannot reproduce. I'm pretty sure they're still considered "alive." There are also people who are sterile; they're also alive. And as for reproduction being the "meaning of life" from an evolutionary standpoint, that's another naturalistic fallacy. Evolution favors anyone who reproduces like crazy and manages to keep their children alive, but I hardly think that's what most people are going to want to do.

Yes, the cells would probably save them. From a biological point of view. Life is reproduction. Since that's all it does. There is even controversy over whether a single molecule being able to replicate itself is life. Traditionally it's not considered that, but so are viruses, which have DNA.

That's a naturalistic fallacy. Simply because we have the capability to reproduce does not mean we should. We have the capacity to kill, as well, but I think we're all agreed that we shouldn't be doing that so much.

Yes, but it's literally part of what we are. That's a slippery slope fallacy. Being able to reproduce is a basic function of ours. As are:

- Homeostasis
- Organization (of cells)
- Metabolism
- Growth
- Adaptation
- Response to stimuli
- Reproduction

(The seven pillars of life.)

It's not what's natural. It's what makes us life. Reproduction can even be seen as the way we continue to live after we die. Since the growth of a fetus is originally part of females. Like a duplication, then they split at child birth. It's thought that all our cells come from splitting the original cell billions of years ago. Our cells continue to split if we reproduce or otherwise they die permanently.

(Female mules actually can reproduce with donkeys too.)

PkMnTrainer Yellow
August 13th, 2011, 08:12 PM
The question is phrased awkwardly. .-.

If I were to take it literally the answer is obviously no, as you already have children and so it's not selfish to not cease to have kids. It would actually be selfish to expect others to cease to have kids they already have.

On the other hand, procreating is potentially selfish. The act of creating the kids in the first place is the selfish thing, not the continued raising of the kids.

At that point it's all circumstantial. See, the human population is nowhere near large enough that the earth can't sustain it. So the question is do we avoid ever reaching maximum capacity or do we not care until we have to?

That there last sentence is the real question, the answer of which will decide which circumstances are selfish or not.

There is also the issue of motive and intent in deciding whether something is selfish or not. Simply put, if one does not do it with their motive being for themselves, it's not selfish.

twocows
August 14th, 2011, 06:52 AM
If every human on the face of the Earth goes with the bolded part and not reproduce, then humans will be extinct in next about... 100 years. Is that what you actually want?
You're misinterpreting the point. The point of limits on reproduction is to reign in an out of control population. Obviously these restrictions or incentives (either or) would be lifted once the population was under control. If we don't have population controls, in a few generations we'll have a major crisis on our hands.

Also, Reproducing and murder is the polar opposite of each other. One begins a new life, and one ends an existing life. Using an example that is completely opposite of what you're applying your example to isn't the best way to back up your opinion, methinks.
Then you completely missed the point. The point wasn't that they're related, it's that just because we have the capacity to do something doesn't mean we should go and do it. It wasn't that murder is somehow related to reproduction (that's silly).


As for overpopulation, I'm not worried because I'm not living in a country where overpopulation is a problem, so my views on the original question would differ from what "should be ideal" in overpopulated countries.
Overpopulation is not a problem in some areas of the US and yet. Places like Detroit have major problems with overcrowding. Give it a few years and it'll get worse in other places. You're pushing the problem on to future generations and saying "well, since it's not here, I don't really care." That's a very selfish attitude.

I may be out of line, but I have to say that the notion that something is disqualified from being a right just because people can live perfectly normal, happy lives without it offends me like few others. It makes me sad to think that I know people who risked their lives to escape from communist East Germany just to find that basic liberty is on the table in the western nations as well. In my mind, a nation that claims to have indiscriminate and ultimate authority on whether or not its citizens can have children is one that holds its population in slavery.
So then why should it be a basic human right? The burden of proof lies on the affirmative party; if you claim it's a human right, there should be a good reason why it ought to be other than "it will upset some people if it's not."


Yes, but it's literally part of what we are. That's a slippery slope fallacy.
Slippery slope "fallacies" are only fallacies if the suggested course of events is in doubt (and if it's more than one sequence of cause/effect, which in this case it's not). If we do not reign in population, the overpopulation will become worse. There is no intermediary step, there is no question of effects. It already happened in China, though their situation has improved drastically since their government implemented population controls (the favoritism toward male children was an unfortunate side effect of their highly male-oriented society, and their government has really cracked down on it in recent years).


Being able to reproduce is a basic function of ours. As are:

- Homeostasis
- Organization (of cells)
- Metabolism
- Growth
- Adaptation
- Response to stimuli
- Reproduction

(The seven pillars of life.)

It's not what's natural. It's what makes us life.
Though I'm not sure if your claim about mules is true or not, there are plenty of creatures which lack the ability to reproduce. And again, how about people with sterility? Growing hair is a basic function of ours; are bald people not alive? That is the definition of a naturalistic fallacy; you're saying that because it's an ability we posses through nature, that we should be free to exploit it as much as we want.

Reproduction can even be seen as the way we continue to live after we die. Since the growth of a fetus is originally part of females. Like a duplication, then they split at child birth. It's thought that all our cells come from splitting the original cell billions of years ago. Our cells continue to split if we reproduce or otherwise they die permanently.
That's nonsense; children are not their parents, they are unique individuals, and I take offense at the very notion. We are not defined by our biology, we are defined by our experience. And it still doesn't stand as a reason for why reproduction should be a basic human right.


Perhaps we should define what a basic human right is (or ought to be). I believe a basic human right is one for which quality of life would be drastically impacted for a significant number of people were it curbed. I don't see reproduction as having a significant impact on quality of life for most people.

I think one-child incentives are a perfectly reasonable way of implementing population controls; people are still free to have more than one child, they just won't receive government help for it. At worst, a few people would be upset for maybe a generation or two, after which it would be the norm and nobody would mind.

Myles
August 14th, 2011, 07:08 AM
The slippery slope is that you were equating reproduction -> overpopulation with murder. I didn't say exploit it as much as we want. I think it would infringe on human rights to outlaw it. Discouraging it and limiting it to one child per person would be a good idea if we get out of control. Because even one child per person will cause a huge decline in population since only about ~80% (US statistics, since it's easier to find US statistics) of people reproduce.

That cellular thing is if you look at the world from a cellular point of view (cellular biology and all). If you're pro-choice, then your view would be at least similar t.o this in that the child is considered 'part' of the parent until the two separate at birth.

Either way, there is the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. And I'm pretty sure that most people would think reproduction is a human right and getting public support of illegalising it would be hard to get and ridiculous (since extinction would be soon to follow).

Female mules can reproduce with donkeys because cross-species breeding only sterilises the males. The females can still reproduce with males of close enough species fertile males. One of which is a donkey. Since mules are donkey-horse crosses. I don't know why you're pushing that particular point. I never said they weren't alive or human.

In some definitions of life, not being able to reproduce could practically exclude you from the definition being alive. The fact that you're individual cells can reproduce inside your body is probably the only thing that would save you.

Some definitions of life are self replication.

icomeanon6
August 14th, 2011, 08:45 AM
So then why should it be a basic human right? The burden of proof lies on the affirmative party; if you claim it's a human right, there should be a good reason why it ought to be other than "it will upset some people if it's not."
When it comes to natural rights the burden of proof lies on those who want to restrict them. I don't buy into the notion that human rights are just something that humans made up. Governments do not grant rights, and ideally they protect them.

If that doesn't satisfy you, then producing children is a basic human right because to claim the power to dictate the size of a family is to claim ownership of that family. No nation is justified in claiming ownership of its citizens.

I think one-child incentives are a perfectly reasonable way of implementing population controls; people are still free to have more than one child, they just won't receive government help for it. At worst, a few people would be upset for maybe a generation or two, after which it would be the norm and nobody would mind.
Oh. Well, if you're just talking about government discouraging people from having more children without ever infringing upon their right to do so, that's a bit better. What I'm talking about is more China's one-child policy and the fines, forced sterilizations, and forced abortions that come with it.

Yoshikko
August 14th, 2011, 12:49 PM
I don't think it is selfish, no. As a matter of fact, I think that as an individual, human being, you are allowed to think more about yourself than the rest, in the end, it's your life which it should be about, from ones own point of view. Other people's problems or lives, shouldn't have priority over your own.

People call it selfish when you care more about yourself than others, when you put yourself ahead of others, or when you don't think about e.g. people who need food or water. I don't think that this is selfish, I think it's normal, it's the default, and it is good when someone puts others ahead of themselves, but it is not selfish if they don't. It shouldn't even be expected of someone that they give up something like having children, for the sake of others. An example, is organ donation. I've heard a lot of people say, that it is selfish when people don't want to put their organs up for donation. The thing is though, that it is a privilege when someone is willing to donate their organs, it is not at all a right, there is a big difference between those two. It is completely normal when someone doesn't want to donate, we should begin by assuming no one wants to donate their organs, make that the default, and then be thankful when someone does want it, instead of taking donation for credit.

I took this example, because it is a partly the same with having a child, while knowing that there are children up for adoption that need care, and thinking that is selfishness. It is not selfish when a person wants to have a child, my god, that is what nature has created us for. It is not selfish when someone wants a child of their own, instead of adopting a child. It is a privilege when someone is willing to adopt a child, it is normal when someone doesn't want that, and wants a child of their own. Another person's child, that is not your problem by default. It is good that some people are willing to take responsibility for it, but you are not at all obligated to do so. You come in the first place, unless you choose to do different, which is good, but people have started to assume this as default, people have started taking this for credit, and then when someone puts themselves first, people call it 'selfish', while actually it is completely normal.

This was more pointed at the 'selfishness', than having children and overpopulation, but I think that is what the question comes down to. Also, this is my opinion, I don't mean to offend anyone.

2Cool4Mewtwo
August 14th, 2011, 02:33 PM
Then you completely missed the point. The point wasn't that they're related, it's that just because we have the capacity to do something doesn't mean we should go and do it. It wasn't that murder is somehow related to reproduction (that's silly).



Overpopulation is not a problem in some areas of the US and yet. Places like Detroit have major problems with overcrowding. Give it a few years and it'll get worse in other places. You're pushing the problem on to future generations and saying "well, since it's not here, I don't really care." That's a very selfish attitude.
I'm sorry, but I just can't 100 percent agree with the bolded part. If you have the capacity to eat, does that mean we shouldn't? If you have the capacity to drive, does that mean we shouldn't? I'd probably agree if the "something" that you mentioned is doing something bad, like killing, stealing, etc. But I do not think reproduction is a bad thing at all. It's what brings the next generation.

On the second paragraph, I've never actually experienced living in any overcrowded countries or cities, so I really have no idea how living in an overpopulated area actually feels like. Some might care about overpopulation, some might not. Overpopulation right now is on only few parts of the country, so personally I don't see overpopulation as an imminent danger, but if in the future (about 300-400 years from now) the entire world starts getting overpopulated and if it does get to be a problem, then there could possibly be a limitation on how many children that a family can have, but right now it's not a problem in most parts of America.

Yoshikko
August 14th, 2011, 03:18 PM
Overpopulation is not a problem in some areas of the US and yet. Places like Detroit have major problems with overcrowding. Give it a few years and it'll get worse in other places. You're pushing the problem on to future generations and saying "well, since it's not here, I don't really care." That's a very selfish attitude.
Actually, I don't think it has anything to do with selfishness. If people would get kids, for the sake of just getting more kids into the world, it would be selfish. But since people take children because it is simply in our nature, instinct, and because we were given the option to conceive children, by nature, it is selfless. People don't do it with the idea of pushing a problem onto the next generation. I don't even think that we should have to bear the responsibility of what's going to happen in the next 100 years, considering reproducing.

I agree on that overpopulation is a problem in some areas, and that there are restrictions that should be made to prevent it from getting out of hand, but we are talking about a world-large scale here. I don't think that people, who don't live in overpopulated areas, should be held responsible. If you live at the other side of the world, there's nothing that you could, or even should do to prevent overpopulation in that country miles and miles and miles away, imo. But I agree on that it is a problem in some places.

Esper
August 15th, 2011, 11:52 AM
I'm sorry, but I just can't 100 percent agree with the bolded part. If you have the capacity to eat, does that mean we shouldn't? If you have the capacity to drive, does that mean we shouldn't? I'd probably agree if the "something" that you mentioned is doing something bad, like killing, stealing, etc. But I do not think reproduction is a bad thing at all. It's what brings the next generation.
What he's saying is that you have a have a good reason for something aside from just having the ability to do it. You don't eat because you can. You eat because you need to do that to survive. You don't drive because you can, but because it's quicker or more convenient, though there are downsides as well that you should think about.

You shouldn't have kids just because you have the biological capacity. There has to be more reason for that because we have the capacity for thought and we can think about consequences of doing or not doing something.

Atomic Pirate
August 17th, 2011, 09:48 AM
Having one or two children, not really selfish
Having 3+, possibly it is selfish.

DowntownDumpling
August 27th, 2011, 06:38 AM
I don't plan to have any kids. It may be a little selfish, but I'm not going to yell at people who have kids, in front of their kids no less.

Musanim
August 27th, 2011, 06:50 AM
No, it isn't really. Especially those little babies! :) :D =D =)

Ice Car
August 28th, 2011, 05:27 PM
This is a hard one. Our population is indeed climbing too fast. Eventually the Earth will not be able to support the population with its resources and we will slowly die out. We should be preserving our resources and not be wasting them so much. Too many people live in the moment, not for the the future. Too many people care more about themselves than they do about anything else, just self-centered and not having giving a crap about what kinds of effects they may be having on things.

Sorry, kind of went off topic there. Anyhow, we shouldn't be having children so much. We all want to live longer, and we all want children, sure, but both allow for large increases in population. People are living longer, and children are being born more often. The death rate, affected by diseases, wildlife, and Survival of the Fittest as seen with "animals in the wild" (Which we still are technically) are supposed to balance out things and keep the population down.

We have cured diseases, kept dangerous wildlife out and sometimes even made them extinct, and Survival of the Fittest hardly matters in terms of life or death, and in our world at this current time is more based around surviving the world, the industry, getting a job, retiring, etc. You almost never face any real danger in our society. This is a problem. People need to die. As harsh as this sounds, it's true. You can't deny the effects we have on the environment, so how can we deny the fact that our growing population of people doing the exact same thing isn't affecting it even more?

It's not selfish to have children, it's just not something that we should do so often. It seems like every couple has one. Not everyone has to have a child to be happy, and what bothers me more is that people find it "cruel" that a parent has only a single child and not another sibling. People are ENCOURAGING it.

Shining Raichu
September 22nd, 2011, 04:12 PM
/late

We have cured diseases, kept dangerous wildlife out and sometimes even made them extinct, and Survival of the Fittest hardly matters in terms of life or death, and in our world at this current time is more based around surviving the world, the industry, getting a job, retiring, etc. You almost never face any real danger in our society. This is a problem. People need to die. As harsh as this sounds, it's true. You can't deny the effects we have on the environment, so how can we deny the fact that our growing population of people doing the exact same thing isn't affecting it even more?

I do very much agree with this statement. The one thing I would ask though, is whether the world should prioritise those currently living or the unborn children who strictly speaking don't need to exist. If we are focusing on preventing overpopulation, would it be more prudent to "kill off" the elderly people who no longer contribute anything to the human race, or prevent further humans from being created?

Personally, I lean more towards the latter. Even with the moral and logistical problems of murder set aside, longevity in life is something most people strive for. All the advances we have made in medicine and science to prolong life would have been for nought if we begin to feel as though people are now living too long. The unconceived children - the people who have never existed - needn't necessarily exist at all. Not every sperm has to become a baby.

what bothers me more is that people find it "cruel" that a parent has only a single child and not another sibling. People are ENCOURAGING it.

Again, I totally agree. This attitude is a real problem. Only-children can grow up just as normal and well-adjusted as children with siblings. The logic behind it is warped, and it has bothered me ever since my parents told me that the reason they had me was to be company for my older sister. Now, while I'm certainly happy to exist, if that is the only reason you want more children then you have no business having more children.

You want company for your child? Fine, what you do is this: you go to a playgroup; you send them to daycare; you send them to school; you buy them a plushie; you buy them a dog/cat/rabbit/pony/really energetic goldfish; you sit them down and help them invent an imaginary friend named Boris who works the register at McDonalds and is a part-time astronaut. What you don't do is drop another sucker into that mess. Kids don't like their siblings anyway.

Kura
September 22nd, 2011, 04:25 PM
There are so many blurred lines when it comes to this discussion.. but what's for sure is that if parents have children only for tax breaks from the government.. then yes that's pretty selfish indeed.

TRIFORCE89
September 22nd, 2011, 07:30 PM
There are so many blurred lines when it comes to this discussion.. but what's for sure is that if parents have children only for tax breaks from the government.. then yes that's pretty selfish indeed.
Selfish and stupid. I would imagine the cost of raising and supporting a child would be greater than any tax relief

Lalapizzame
September 22nd, 2011, 10:05 PM
Children are necessary to ensure a vibrant working society. The old live off the fruits of the youth's labor, and the young will raise another generation to replace the frail or dead.

There is no economic incentive to have children just to receive tax breaks. That is not greed and selfishness, that is stupidity and bean counting (incorrectly, I might add).

Most population growth is centered in rural and relatively undeveloped places, like Africa. Africa does need to bring down its explosive fertility rate unless it can master modern agriculture and industry, otherwise it will have no way of feeding a larger population when it's already facing agricultural deficiencies now.

The problem is that Africa relies on manual agriculture. The family relies on children to bring in additional income and help relieve the workload during a harvest, which is good. The problem is, African agriculture is so poor and inefficient compared to western agriculture the marginal benefit of having children as farm labor is much smaller than they would imagine. Not to mention farmers are deprived of their livelihoods when western agriculture would be able to outcompete them in a free market quite easily, due to scale of production and a relatively low cost of production. Africa must modernize, or starve in its tradition. It makes for great tourism, but not great feasts.

On the other hand, the Western world should be embracing reproduction. The developed and rapidly-developing world faces a lack of fertility, and many countries have dropped below the replacement rate, especially in Europe. We will face a labor shortage if the birth rate continues to decline, and the social programs we hold so dearly in the west will be unsustainable if new labor cannot replenish the monetary aspect of these ideas. Obviously, raising a child is expensive in terms of both time and money. Tax breaks are like offering quarters and one-dollar bills to a performer: symbolic gesture, but not much in practice. That is, unless they are truly that large. In either case the tax breaks and other government proposals are unlikely to compensate for the cost of having children and raising them through adulthood. Higher education is especially costly.

Kura
September 22nd, 2011, 10:20 PM
Selfish and stupid. I would imagine the cost of raising and supporting a child would be greater than any tax relief

It IS stupid. But not untrue! I've seen and heard it with my own eyes and ears more than once and it was more than surprising- though not surprisingly it came from those already on welfare.


I think the problem is also that the Western world is also somewhat having an economical decline (in more places than others) so those in developed countries don't want to have children because it is much too expensive (cost of living etc) already.

Lalapizzame
September 22nd, 2011, 10:26 PM
More of an inevitable relative decline than an absolute one. The debt and general difficulty of outgrowing developing economies is an acute problem for the West though.

Forever
September 22nd, 2011, 11:00 PM
The unconceived children - the people who have never existed - needn't necessarily exist at all. Not every sperm has to become a baby.

Doesn't everyone deserve a chance at life? With that in mind, consider all the "greats", the people who have literally changed the world as we know. Scientists, doctors, etc, the ones who have literally made breakthroughs, saved lives, brought about equality somewhat and so on. If their parents thought "oh hey I want to become pregnant again and have another child, but overpopulation is an issue, so we must have no more children", really, if you consider that idk where our world would be at if everyone had that mindset. And as you brought up in the other part of your post in reference to being born for the siblings: not everyone who has changed the world is a firstborn, so. :x

It's like trying to fight fate, go with your initial instincts and have another kid if you really want to, if you second guess it, idk. I feel like when that moment comes... it's hard to explain. If it's someone's destiny to exist then they should exist and just not exist for overpopulation purposes (wow that sounds awkward but I hope that makes sense).

And yes you could bring about lots of "bad" people to disagree with this, but the amount of good people in the world outweighs the bad in my opinion.

Gold warehouse
September 23rd, 2011, 12:17 AM
Selfish and stupid. I would imagine the cost of raising and supporting a child would be greater than any tax relief
Try living in a welfare state
like Britain for example
You can see it everywhere you go. I have no doubt for a second that a fair percentage of mothers here aren't mothers because they like children.

Briar
September 23rd, 2011, 12:47 AM
Doesn't everyone deserve a chance at life? With that in mind, consider all the "greats", the people who have literally changed the world as we know. Scientists, doctors, etc, the ones who have literally made breakthroughs, saved lives, brought about equality somewhat and so on. If their parents thought "oh hey I want to become pregnant again and have another child, but overpopulation is an issue, so we must have no more children", really, if you consider that idk where our world would be at if everyone had that mindset. And as you brought up in the other part of your post in reference to being born for the siblings: not everyone who has changed the world is a firstborn, so. :x

It's like trying to fight fate, go with your initial instincts and have another kid if you really want to, if you second guess it, idk. I feel like when that moment comes... it's hard to explain. If it's someone's destiny to exist then they should exist and just not exist for overpopulation purposes (wow that sounds awkward but I hope that makes sense).

And yes you could bring about lots of "bad" people to disagree with this, but the amount of good people in the world outweighs the bad in my opinion.

just my two cents, but i personally think that "greatness" (as you have said) has more to do with how you were formed by your environment than destiny or fate. ever heard of the saying "environment forms character"? although some people were born with biological disadvantages/advantages, that still doesn't mean they should just let "destiny take its course" and not do anything about it. what i'm getting from this post is, since we all have potential superstars just waiting to be produced, we should all just go and have lots of children. personally, i disagree with that mindset. overpopulation is real, and so is its relationship with depleting resources and climate change. if you want to have a child, fine, but just make sure that you have enough resources to keep your family alive, and that you rear your future children correctly.
in reply to the topic itself, i don't think it's selfish for parents to want children. i mean, having children entails a lot of responsibilities, and as a woman (yes, i would like to think of myself as that), it's really a sacrifice on the mother's part. that's why i personally think that, if they're ready for it, and if they have enough resources to support a larger family, and if they're mentally and psychologically capable, then by all means, go and have kids.

Shining Raichu
September 28th, 2011, 03:52 PM
Doesn't everyone deserve a chance at life? With that in mind, consider all the "greats", the people who have literally changed the world as we know. Scientists, doctors, etc, the ones who have literally made breakthroughs, saved lives, brought about equality somewhat and so on. If their parents thought "oh hey I want to become pregnant again and have another child, but overpopulation is an issue, so we must have no more children", really, if you consider that idk where our world would be at if everyone had that mindset. And as you brought up in the other part of your post in reference to being born for the siblings: not everyone who has changed the world is a firstborn, so. :x

It's like trying to fight fate, go with your initial instincts and have another kid if you really want to, if you second guess it, idk. I feel like when that moment comes... it's hard to explain. If it's someone's destiny to exist then they should exist and just not exist for overpopulation purposes (wow that sounds awkward but I hope that makes sense).

And yes you could bring about lots of "bad" people to disagree with this, but the amount of good people in the world outweighs the bad in my opinion.

There are several flaws in this argument. Firstly, in relation to "doesn't everyone deserve a chance at life?" I'd say that this is an incredibly slippery slope. That's an argument more suited to a debate about abortion - and even then I'd disagree with it - but I won't go too deeply into that. When talking about whether or not to create a new life (as opposed to terminating one that is arguably already forming) the argument of "doesn't everybody deserve a chance at life?" means - at least to my mind - that every menstrual cycle, every protected sexual encounter and every masturbatory emission of sperm that does not culminate in the genesis of a foetus would be considered "wasteful" at best or "abandonment of a child" at worst.

A lot of the world's current problems result from caring about things that never existed, so the moment we begin to worry about potential children that have not yet even begun to form (let alone live) is the moment we open a Pandora's Box so lethal that we might as well call the whole thing off and resign the Earth to destruction.

Now, in regards to your arguments about destiny - the fact that you successfully pre-empted a rebuttal means that you too saw the flaw in what you were saying. Yes, your child could be the next Isaac Newton - but they could also be the next Saddam Hussein. You just don't know. And when considering this while having a child (and I'm sure many parents-to-be consider what their potential children would grow up to be) the idea that they could be the next "great" is not enough basis alone to make such a decision, especially when you consider the flip side. Though to be honest, the likelihood that they will be either the next "great" or the next "great horror" is not very high at all. It is far more likely that they will be neither. They could even be the next great gas-station owner.

Also, if you believe so strongly in destiny, did you ever stop to consider that it could be my destiny to warn people and stop overpopulation?

Lalapizzame
September 28th, 2011, 08:09 PM
I have already stated my main post here, which was not really an argument in any case.

Sentimental arguments are a dangerous thing to play with. One spark of sentiment can start a wild fire if left unattended to.

aruchan
September 28th, 2011, 10:03 PM
Depends why, like most things in life. I'm not sure I want to have children at all, but I sort of want my genes to pass on, so I guess that's selfish. The line of selfish/not selfish is really vague...

-ty-
September 29th, 2011, 09:51 AM
I know a woman quite well, who has 5 kids. She doesn't work. She is able to work. She collects child support, food stamps, medical insurance, home, everything she needs. On top of all of that, she doesn't do housework; the state will pay for a care-taker to do her laundry, cook, and clean. I don't think that there are TOO many of these types of people, but yes, they are selfish.

My parents both have jobs, and could be having the time of their life if they didn't have kids, they would have tens of thousands of dollars left over to spend on themselves for vacations, luxuries, or anything really. But they decided to have kids, pay for EVERYTHING, nothing besides public school provided by the state, and they are now helping with tuition for 4 kids in college.

Sunny Castform
September 29th, 2011, 11:21 AM
I'm a simple guy so I guess I have a pretty simplistic view on this. I only think a child should be brought into the world if it can be properly cared for. I only think it's a selfish decision made by parents if the parents cannot provide the resources necessary for the thing to have a good life. Terrible living conditions, not enough food, NOT ENOUGH LOVE...

Stormbringer
September 29th, 2011, 06:26 PM
I'm a simple guy so I guess I have a pretty simplistic view on this. I only think a child should be brought into the world if it can be properly cared for. I only think it's a selfish decision made by parents if the parents cannot provide the resources necessary for the thing to have a good life. Terrible living conditions, not enough food, NOT ENOUGH LOVE...

This, pretty much.

It's only selfish if parents deliberately have children for federal benefits, that's abusing the system and morally reprehensible. Kinda like the Duggar family.

Lalapizzame
September 29th, 2011, 06:34 PM
Something tells me the subsidies of the state are insufficient to establish the desire to have a child. There may be some who have children and use state support as their basis, but I am deeply skeptical costs are that low or subsidies are that extensive.

Dragonite Ernston
September 29th, 2011, 09:42 PM
Some people would say that it's selfish not to have children. That's all I have to say about that.

Shining Raichu
October 3rd, 2011, 12:46 AM
I was actually intending to bring this up as a secondary topic to the thread, but I see Dragonite Ernston beat me to it already.

Some people would indeed say that it's selfish not to have children. I, however, am totally blanking on valid reasons why they would think this. The only reasons I can think of are religious, what with them encouraging sex for the purpose of procreation only, but I tend not to put much stock in religious 'reasoning'.

So, would you say it's selfish not to have children? If so, why do you think this?

Zet
October 3rd, 2011, 12:56 AM
v/ussCHoQttyQ

I don't know why some people think it's selfish to have kids, while others think it's selfish to not have them. I wish they would all just agree to agree that children are optional.

SwirlyBirds
October 6th, 2011, 07:18 PM
Because I was thinking that those living in extreme poverty really shouldn't bring children into their world just to suffer like they do.
Agreed. If you are extremely poor, have low social status, or are cruel to others, having children would be selfish. They'll just suffer and/or hate you. Especially if you're cruel to others, children in particular. Why would you bring them into the world if all you are going to do is torture them? That's selfish.

Lalapizzame
October 6th, 2011, 08:03 PM
If you engage in small-scale agriculture (family farms) in a backward and antiquated scenario it is not unreasonable to want more children. Knowing that the mortality rate in such undeveloped circumstances would be extremely high, it is understandable why the mother and father would want to bear more fruit. The immediate value of their kids once they have gone past the first five years of life can also be useful, magnified once you retire and need someone to support you. Back in the days of child labor, it was also good to have a handful of children for future economic benefit (depending on their incomes).

Incidentally, the more developed and wealthy a country is, the lower the national fertility rate. This becomes a problem past a certain point (early-twentieth century Europe began to see that problem, France had suffered from low birthrates compared to death rates since Napoleon was deposed, causing a stagnation at around 40 million until the late 20th century baby boom). We should thank the poor in our country for having children, while scorning explosive growth in third-world populations like in Africa.

I don't see how bringing them into a poor family is torture / inspiring hatred. They may look upon the lives of their better-off colleagues but that will inspire envy, not anger. As long as the family is clearly doing all it can to feed itself, the child should not and most likely will not feel mental frustration. I also believe having children from poorer-off circumstances is a good thing in some ways, allowing them to stand times of hardship without breaking like a bud in the face of wind and understand the necessity of frugality and saving.

femtrooper
October 12th, 2011, 08:06 PM
Ahhh, I love this question. The concept of having children has always fascinated me because sure, it's necessary to keep the human race going...but no one really thinks about that when they have kids. It's not like, "Honey, I'm concerned about the human race, so I kinda think we should contribute in keeping it going!" No. I want kids because I think it's so cool that I can create a life, but that is slightly selfish. I live in a country that is not overpopulated like some, but still, my boyfriend and I do want kids (or kid) in the future simply because it's expected in society and really because it's pretty neat. I want a mini me. I think being a parent would be wonderful and rewarding, but yes, it's kind of for my own benefit. I don't think there is an answer to this question, it is one of those 'thinker' type questions. It's just something to keep in the back of your mind. It's really quite interesting.

Corvus of the Black Night
October 13th, 2011, 04:24 PM
I can really only see one reason why someone would have children for a selfish reason, and that was if they wanted to gloat about them and have them more like pets than a new being. In that case, those parents are not mature and probably not sane...

lx_theo
October 13th, 2011, 07:01 PM
Is it selfish to have children?
Not in itself

Is it selfish to have more children than there are parents?
This, yes, I think it is. I can understand some people having three children, but it seems to be pushing it a bit. Attitudes that its still normal to have a herd of kids is whats causing population issues (along with advancements allowing healthier lives, of course).

Should there be laws against having many children?
No, thats just wrong. What we should do is make huge incentives to have less kids, like to lower tax benefits as you get to a point in children numbers. Stuff like that. If there was a sort of law involving restrictions, the worst I could imagine anywhere near reasonable is that in order to grow your family after so many, they have to be adopted.

cacturne4512
October 20th, 2011, 06:53 PM
I don't think the idea of having kids in general is selfish, but I do think that it does go down that path when you get to be those families on tv who have 8, 10, 12 even 19 kids. I think one family should have 4 kids at the most, if the children are all the parents biological children. A family could adopt more children if they want.

Olli
October 21st, 2011, 03:25 AM
I'm not quite sure if I would describe it as selfish, but like alot of people stated, it would be alot better to adopt other children, so that the world population doesn't grow even more. What I'm most worried about are those people who decide to have 4+ children, and all of their children should have just as many, and they have no reason whatsoever to have all those children, and in most cases they can't even feed them, thus sending them to an orphanage, where they might not even get adopted.
I agree that people should have 2 children max.

Charlie Kelly
October 21st, 2011, 10:04 PM
(*Note: When I say "you" in this post, I'm referring to either a single person, or the couple considering having the child. And by "alone" and "on your own", I mean the couple as well.)

I feel like you need to be self-aware when you decide or decide to not have children. If you have a low-paying job, or are already struggling to support yourself, then do not have children. If you can't do it on your own, then you don't need to have them. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying it's good to raise a child without any outside help, but you shouldn't have to rely on that help.

If you already have a child, and then decide to have another down the line, you should ask yourself the same question again, "if I had to, could I handle this alone right now?" Little disgusts me more than a parent throwing adult responsibilities onto a child or teenager because they were either too stupid to realize they couldn't handle another baby, or too lazy to take care of the baby that their first child had no choice in. You were the ones who had sex and decided to have a baby, not your first child. It's not like they wanted a puppy and you got them one, and they should have to care for it.

Bringing a child into poverty and poor living conditions is 100% selfish.

Kanzler
October 23rd, 2011, 09:27 AM
I disagree with the way selfish is being used in this thread. I don't see how having a child can be described as "selfish" the same way as having a child and neglecting it for personal leisure can also be described as "selfish". Of course there is the element of self-interest, but then again, what's so negative about it for us to confer upon it such a negative connotation of "selfish"? We could argue that breathing is selfish, as it is done in our interest in self-preservation. On the converse, reproduction, from a biological perspective, is just the step up once one's survival needs are secured. I'm losing track of where the opinions in this thread are pointing at, because the use of "selfish" is starting to become less meaningful.

There's more to having children than simply the discussion about if and the quality of how it will be cared for. I don't see a child being born into poverty as suffering - although they are worse off than the rest of us, a life is still just as valuable, even if it doesn't come with all the bells and whistles of wealth. So it's pretty clear that I'm approaching it from a spiritual vs. a materialistic perspective. But even if we look at the material, there's not much wrong about having children in us Western countries. The majority of the population growth that may hurt the standard of living for the rest of the world (if it does) will occur in the third world - and it is whether and how quickly that the third world modernizes that will determine where our population peak ends. Canada and the United States are still growing because of 1. immigrants and 2. Hispanics who generally have larger family sizes; but again, this is pretty negligible in the face of the massive youth boom in the third world.

In assuming that the general demographic of this thread to be young Westerners, I would say that there is a lot of talk about how since having children isn't necessary, it isn't required. There is more to life than just having the same amount of whatever as the next guy over. Even if one realizes that a child may be a financial drain upon the rest of society, the parent or the child may view their relationship as something much more than that. There are people that sacrifice big dreams to settle down and have children, and there are also those who live from paycheck to paycheck, but some people don't think about the dent that a child makes in one's or someone else's paycheck. To some people, there is happiness found in having their own child that I don't think can be replaced by anything else. And I don't think any discussion about this matter should be done without acknowledging that there are other ways to look at this issue.

Ineffable~
October 23rd, 2011, 09:58 AM
Nice thread.

Personally it kind of bothers me when people are obsessed with genetics, for example, "it's not as real unless I have my own kid." I'm not saying a lot of people really believe that (although hell if my know what people actually believe), but I think any value a genetic child has over an adopted child is more or less nonexistent. If I'm not mistaken it's a particular part of human nature to want your offspring to look like you, but in a more advanced society we should all know that raising a child and being his/her primary caretaker and supporter for almost twenty years makes that child your son/daughter far more than having the same beautiful green eyes.

My point being, if you compare raising a child from the womb to raising an adopted child from the crib, yes technically the former is classic human selfishness, but like Toujours said, selfishness (especially this kind of selfishness) is totally universal and not at all bad on its own.

Anyway, I wish I saw more people adopting, but that's really not my business at all to get involved in other people's families.

Take it for what it's worth since I'm never raising kids anyway. /also selfish

seeker
October 24th, 2011, 12:51 PM
Time to tip-toe around this.
I think if you have kids intentionally, you need to bring them into an environment where you're sure they're not going to have to endeavor the unnecessary oppressions harnessed upon them by the lack of stability within the household relationships. I think the worst thing you can do is bring a child into a family were the parents aren't solid. This is something I grew up in, and it's something I learned to never let happen to my kids in the future. But also in addition to that, I think it's always a good thing to consider the times we're living in. Having a child now, while running the risk of potentially hiking tax rates, fewer jobs and higher poverty, you would really need to reconsider unless you were both in a financially sound state as well as being in a good position with the person you're going to have the child with.

Everything we do is selfish, even if we're doing it for someone else, there's going to be self motivation to do it. Whether it is the feeling you get when you help that person, or to get a favour in return, we never do things completely out of the goodness of our hearts without even feeling anything in return. Forgive the awful wording here, but if someone were to undergo an abnegation where they give up something they love in the benefit of someone they love, it would still be for their own benefit, even if just a tiny bit.

When you think about children, you must also think about love. Love is also a selfish thing. Regardless of the kind. If you want someone else to feel good, that is still your desire that you want to be fulfilled, no matter how much you love that person, there is still that certain entity of selfishness included. So when having kids, regardless of the love involved, there is still going to be that layer of selfishness. But I think the term "selfishness" is usually associated with negative inputs, whereas people can be selfish in wanting the best for another person.

But in relation to the question that spoke about whether it would be a drain of resources to have a child; I honestly don't think so. Especially if you do plan on raising the child right, they're going to want him or her to do well in life, be happy and above all my point is going to be that this person will most likely contribute to society in some way, and we would hope it would be positive. So I think that most people tend to give back what they give into the world in some aspects, exempting the affect on the ozone layer and such of course.

I think holding off to have kids is the best idea. Until all factors are completely settled, and the couple have got a steady relationship going. I think that if the child is born into a supporting family with enough resources, love and know how to look fter the child, then it's not selfish. At the end of the day, having children isn't the selfish thing; it's what those children grow up to do that matters more.

GFA
October 24th, 2011, 03:41 PM
It's selfish to have a bunch of kids you can't support.

My cousin has 8 kids, 5 biological ones and 3 she adopted from Russia. Her parents (my aunt and uncle) are pretty well to do people, and so is her husband (and she currently works part-time). I could call this selfish, but she can support her family, so I see no problem with it.

Seki
November 5th, 2011, 01:24 AM
In my prime minister's and his father's view, ITS SELFISH TO NOT HAVE CHILDREN. Yea, you read it correctly, its SELFISH TO NOT HAVE CHILDREN in that old man's view. They are even offering incentives such as Baby bonus, compulsory Maternity and Paternity leave and many many more to those who have children. He said that he is doing all these just to make the country a "not ageing population nation". If you are curious to know which country I am from, its Singapore. (that small island in South-East Asia that is below Malaysia and have lots of Foreign Talent)

Broken_Arrow
November 20th, 2011, 11:07 PM
i think there are people who shouldn't have kids as they can't be depended on...but also i knew some people who had a bad childhood and they kept saying when they have kids they gonna avoid what happen with them in childhood and they did...

don't worry about populations as there are new people born others die and wars kill lots of people...this is not in our hands though..

Shining Raichu
November 20th, 2011, 11:15 PM
don't worry about populations as there are new people born others die and wars kill lots of people...this is not in our hands though..

Our population just reached seven billion. Even with people dying, along with wars and natural disasters, our population is increasing. It's not evening out - the rate at which people are giving birth is faster than the rate at which nature, disease and war are wiping people out.

Since population increase only gets faster with time (i.e. more people in the world meaning more potential breeding opportunities), the only way to slow it down is to either start murdering people or stop creating new ones. Considering that the people who already exist by virtue of this have a right to life, the option of murdering them is not an option, so we have to turn to the alternative. This is why I think it's selfish to have children.

Broken_Arrow
November 20th, 2011, 11:22 PM
yes but also remember,it's your opinion there are people who dream about having children...

IMO the problem is in the people who give birth to a child then throw him\her away those are a lot nowadays and these kind of people should stop....

if someone planing to have a child then that person should think a good life to his child not to satisfy his desirs only...

Shining Raichu
November 20th, 2011, 11:58 PM
Yeah, this is my opinion and I'd never try to suggest any differently lol. That's what debates are about, putting forth opinions.

Now yes, people do dream of having children. That doesn't make them having children any less selfish. When considering the big picture, the world has enough people without people dropping more into the world because it is their dream. I certainly don't condemn those that choose to have children, I just think it's really something to consider before you do: Does the world need your offspring? Also, those that dream of children have the option of adopting. There are tons of children out there that don't have a home and essentially by insisting on having your own biological children you are depriving them of one.

Broken_Arrow
November 21st, 2011, 12:06 AM
Hmm,maybe yes...but even though people won't listen,they gonna keep having children and they won't care a lot...

yes,adopting is something people could consider but also i know people who adopt and also like to have their own children..

Oryx
November 21st, 2011, 12:22 AM
Hmm,maybe yes...but even though people won't listen,they gonna keep having children and they won't care a lot...

yes,adopting is something people could consider but also i know people who adopt and also like to have their own children..

People often like to do things that are wrong or selfish, so that's not really an argument for whether or not it's truly selfish. Basically all you're saying is "people want to have children sometimes", which is something that no one is disagreeing with. :x

Broken_Arrow
November 21st, 2011, 12:29 AM
yes,also i'm trying to say that if there are people wants to have their own children..it's not selfish...

Oryx
November 21st, 2011, 12:33 AM
What's the reasoning behind that other than "people obviously can't want selfish things"?

flight
November 21st, 2011, 08:03 AM
It's selfish, and yet, it's not selfish.

There's literally so much focus going on in the just about 7 billion here that a lot of people just miss certain points entirely. Take this scenario(that I've been thinking of): what if every single family adopted every child that was up for adoption? Of course, that would place the kids who are in foster homes actual homes to live in, yeah? Excuse me for digging a bit deeper, but whats stopping the adopted kids from wanting, sometime in the future, their own biological kids?

Adoption is a really sweet and cute method of having children, but it just doesn't sit well with some people. With other people, they want their child to literally be a reflection of themselves and the family as a whole(again, this is probably up for debate, but thats what this thread is for). One can say that's probably as selfish as it gets, but then again, isn't the human race at least a bit selfish in some way and in some fashion? Haven't we at least done one selfish thing in our lives? I know thats being beside the point, but having kids isn't really too far fetched, if you think about it.

Sure, it'll increase the population. Sure, the population would grow so huge someday that finding spaces for parking lots are going to be a huge pain in the ass. But it's inevitable.If you adopt a kid, and he/she learns how to drive, they're going to fill up that parking lot regardless of whether they came from a womb or not(Andy/ShiningRaichu is going to understand this example).

I apologize for going past the point here, but as humans, we have learned(and can learn) to adapt to just about almost any situation imaginable. You have billions of people in the country of China, and yet they've learned to adapt(although how well is irrelevant, the fact that they manage to be holding their own seems fair enough to me). If the world population even hits 10 billion, we'll learn to adapt. Build bigger parking lots, Create more seats in the movie theatre so it won't be so jam packed. Do something so the world can be less claustrophobic.

But that's my two cents.

Oryx
November 21st, 2011, 08:48 AM
It's selfish, and yet, it's not selfish.

There's literally so much focus going on in the just about 7 billion here that a lot of people just miss certain points entirely. Take this scenario(that I've been thinking of): what if every single family adopted every child that was up for adoption? Of course, that would place the kids who are in foster homes actual homes to live in, yeah? Excuse me for digging a bit deeper, but whats stopping the adopted kids from wanting, sometime in the future, their own biological kids?

Adoption is a really sweet and cute method of having children, but it just doesn't sit well with some people. With other people, they want their child to literally be a reflection of themselves and the family as a whole(again, this is probably up for debate, but thats what this thread is for). One can say that's probably as selfish as it gets, but then again, isn't the human race at least a bit selfish in some way and in some fashion? Haven't we at least done one selfish thing in our lives? I know thats being beside the point, but having kids isn't really too far fetched, if you think about it.

Sure, it'll increase the population. Sure, the population would grow so huge someday that finding spaces for parking lots are going to be a huge pain in the ass. But it's inevitable.If you adopt a kid, and he/she learns how to drive, they're going to fill up that parking lot regardless of whether they came from a womb or not(Andy/ShiningRaichu is going to understand this example).

I apologize for going past the point here, but as humans, we have learned(and can learn) to adapt to just about almost any situation imaginable. You have billions of people in the country of China, and yet they've learned to adapt(although how well is irrelevant, the fact that they manage to be holding their own seems fair enough to me). If the world population even hits 10 billion, we'll learn to adapt. Build bigger parking lots, Create more seats in the movie theatre so it won't be so jam packed. Do something so the world can be less claustrophobic or something.

But that's my two cents.

I agree with the idea that it's selfish but that doesn't make it wrong, I believe that's what I myself argued earlier. But the problem of overpopulation is much bigger than parking lots; more like even more widespread starvation. :x

Gold warehouse
November 21st, 2011, 09:09 AM
Just going to throw a point I have in here. And I used to be on the same page as you guys too, so I'm not *****ing or anything here.

To those saying you should have all the financial resources before having children; put yourself in the same shoes as the underclass for a moment. Most people who are born in a lower class will stay in that class for the rest of their life, they have no hope of getting out of it. Are they supposed to not have children for their entire lives; perhaps one of the few things that could give them bit of happiness?

It all depends on what you consider adequate resources. Actually, what the hell is adequate resources? If you're surviving on a single can of baked beans per day and can afford nothing else, then no, you shouldn't have kids; but that's pretty extreme. What about if they can afford just food and a bed and scrape the bills, and that's it? Does that mean they shouldn't have kids? Money isn't everything. You don't need luxury items to be happy.

There are kids born into the lower working class who eventually become very successful; at the same time there are kids born into the upper class who become drop out drug addicts.

Where do you draw the line that says someone is incapable of supporting their children financially?

Azzurra
November 21st, 2011, 09:28 AM
I guess it depends on how old you are. If you're say, fifty and you're wanting a child I'd say it's selfish since you probably won't be able to bring the child up properly (you'd be 70 when they're 20) but if you were in your mid to late thirties and you'd always wanted one, I can't see the harm in it.

Esper
November 21st, 2011, 10:46 AM
I apologize for going past the point here, but as humans, we have learned(and can learn) to adapt to just about almost any situation imaginable. You have billions of people in the country of China, and yet they've learned to adapt(although how well is irrelevant, the fact that they manage to be holding their own seems fair enough to me).
China may seem like they're doing fine right now, but if you're driving toward a cliff you can still say that you're doing fine until you actually go over. I'm not saying I agree with the overpopulation argument (since I've read some arguments stating that we're due to level off population wise as the death rate and birth rate start to equalize), although I still sympathize with a lot of arguments in favor of people having fewer children anyway and don't discount overpopulation as a potential problem.

Actually, I was bored a while back and did up a little flow chart on the whole overpopulation argument while I was trying to organize my thoughts on it. Might as well share it here thought it's only somewhat related to the topic.

http://i44.tinypic.com/9u1b4h.png

Dakotah
November 22nd, 2011, 04:59 AM
To this, I will offer this one fact: The human population, although recently reaching 7 billion, is aging faster than it is reproducing. Every year more and more people are becoming senior citizen, and less and less couples are willing to have children. So even though the world's population has reached this number, given our rapidly declining birth rates, we can soon expect to see the population number begin to fall.

It is not selfish to want to continue the human race's existence. It is selfish to consider your needs more important than that of others. Having children is probably the most important contribution any of us can make to society. In the end, it is a very selfless act. Not a selfish one.

Blade_of_darkness
November 22nd, 2011, 10:55 AM
The only way that I can find that having children would be selfish would be that, after their child(ren) have grown up & are ready to take care of themselves, that one or both of their parents would start taking what their children has earned, namely the money, valuables, even a place in their own homes, without giving anything back to their children in return. It's almost like they've become leeches to their own children.

Some parents would think that, since they gave their children life, that they've got the right to take whatever their children have gained under their own power. No, it doesn't work that way. If a parent would be disabled to the point in which they can't take care of themselves anymore, then it would be understandable, but leeching your own children off of their hard earned money & goods? That's the definition of selfishness.

Oryx
November 22nd, 2011, 11:08 AM
The only way that I can find that having children would be selfish would be that, after their child(ren) have grown up & are ready to take care of themselves, that one or both of their parents would start taking what their children has earned, namely the money, valuables, even a place in their own homes, without giving anything back to their children in return. It's almost like they've become leeches to their own children.

Some parents would think that, since they gave their children life, that they've got the right to take whatever their children have gained under their own power. No, it doesn't work that way. If a parent would be disabled to the point in which they can't take care of themselves anymore, then it would be understandable, but leeching your own children off of their hard earned money & goods? That's the definition of selfishness.

Although, think of it more this way. Up until 18 years old (for most), a child lives with their parents. The parents pay the bills, all of them, they buy all of the child's clothes, they feed them, they deal with all of the child's problems for them, and then there are the little things like a parent may drive a child to school or buy a child presents every birthday.

For all that a parent does when a child is leeching off of them, it seems reasonable that if a parent retired that the child would take care of them without asking for the parent to give them something in return. While your argument does apply well to cases such as Gary Coleman and parents that take advantage of their children, but your generalization went a bit too far in claiming that all parents that have the physical ability to take care of themselves have no right asking their children to take care of them.

Blade_of_darkness
November 22nd, 2011, 01:03 PM
For all that a parent does when a child is leeching off of them, it seems reasonable that if a parent retired that the child would take care of them without asking for the parent to give them something in return. While your argument does apply well to cases such as Gary Coleman and parents that take advantage of their children, but your generalization went a bit too far in claiming that all parents that have the physical ability to take care of themselves have no right asking their children to take care of them.

That may be so, but if their children are already struggling to make ends meet on their own, taking care of their aging parents will most likely make things worse for both the child & the parent in question. If that child of theirs does indeed have a solid footing in this society & is having a life filled with prosperity, then it's all fair game if they're willing to help them live out the rest of their lives.

Don't get me wrong, Toujours, I absolutely agree with everything that you've said. However, if taking care of one of their aging parents is going to put a bigger strain on themselves, all I can say is, love is only going to take them so far...

Sephiroth2009
November 22nd, 2011, 01:24 PM
Our population just reached seven billion. Even with people dying, along with wars and natural disasters, our population is increasing. It's not evening out - the rate at which people are giving birth is faster than the rate at which nature, disease and war are wiping people out.

Since population increase only gets faster with time (i.e. more people in the world meaning more potential breeding opportunities), the only way to slow it down is to either start murdering people or stop creating new ones. Considering that the people who already exist by virtue of this have a right to life, the option of murdering them is not an option, so we have to turn to the alternative. This is why I think it's selfish to have children.
This here sounds selfish. And sounds like something out of a science fiction book. That's what fluoride is for anyway, to sterilize us.

Oryx
November 22nd, 2011, 01:27 PM
This here sounds selfish. And sounds like something out of a science fiction book. That's what fluoride is for anyway, to sterilize us.

I would like you to elaborate on what about that is selfish in your opinion, if you don't mind.

@Blade: I'm glad you backed up a bit on that cause that was all I was saying, that there are definitely circumstances where a parent "leeching" off of a child was completely reasonable. :P I would even go a bit farther back based on the parents' possible struggle to raise the children, but agree to disagree, yeah?

Sephiroth2009
November 22nd, 2011, 01:36 PM
I would like you to elaborate on what about that is selfish in your opinion, if you don't mind.

@Blade: I'm glad you backed up a bit on that cause that was all I was saying, that there are definitely circumstances where a parent "leeching" off of a child was completely reasonable. :P I would even go a bit farther back based on the parents' possible struggle to raise the children, but agree to disagree, yeah?
Guess I misunderstood it. I thought he was mentioning that acts of depopulation should be endorsed. Of course if you support the fluoride in the water you're really no different.

Oryx
November 22nd, 2011, 01:39 PM
Guess I misunderstood it. I thought he was mentioning that acts of depopulation should be endorsed. Of course if you support the fluoride in the water you're really no different.

What he was doing was showing the two options for lowering the population, and logically explaining why, since one is immoral and cannot be done, the other is necessary for the survival of the human race (or at least to lower the population).

Oryx
November 22nd, 2011, 02:55 PM
But it's not a human's right to dictate who should have kids no matter what you say or how you feel about it.

But I think the point was more that it is selfish to have children because not having children is the only way to decrease the looming threat of overpopulation. I don't think he was lobbying for a full-out ban on having children (well it's possible with his stance on kids :P), but more so relating to the argument of "not having children is the only way to stop overpopulation issues, you choose to still have children, therefore you're thinking about yourself and not the rest of the world, which is selfish".

Dakotah
November 23rd, 2011, 04:10 AM
But I think the point was more that it is selfish to have children because not having children is the only way to decrease the looming threat of overpopulation.

While the population level is pretty high, this is quickly being offset by the fact we are facing an ever increasingly aging population. More and more people are becoming senior citizens, while less and less people are having children. So while it is true that this world does have more people on it than have ever been on it before, unless we start having more children, the number of people in the world will soon begin to reverse, and we'll see a population decline rather than an increase.

Shining Raichu
November 23rd, 2011, 04:31 AM
But it's not a human's right to dictate who should have kids no matter what you say or how you feel about it.

I'm not dictating who should have kids. I'm not discriminating. I'm saying everybody needs to slow it down. In any case, I'm expressing an opinion - and while I wish the world would actually listen to what I have to say, I am under no impression that I have the power to stop anybody from doing anything.



While the population level is pretty high, this is quickly being offset by the fact we are facing an ever increasingly aging population. More and more people are becoming senior citizens, while less and less people are having children. So while it is true that this world does have more people on it than have ever been on it before, unless we start having more children, the number of people in the world will soon begin to reverse, and we'll see a population decline rather than an increase.

Excellent!

phonastik
November 23rd, 2011, 05:34 AM
I've been thinking about this for a while. I think that there's a certain selfishness about it. There is no reason to bring a child into a world which cannot support it, especially when there are millions of children who are suffering the effects of overpopulation, overfarming, water shortages, et cetera.

And also, there's a certain arrogance about the fact that two people think they're so fantastic that there should be a person in the world that's basically them combined. :P

Esper
November 23rd, 2011, 10:04 AM
Now that I've been thinking about this topic for a little bit I'm starting to feel that having children isn't inherently selfish, but that there are a lot of factors that play into it which make having children more or less selfish.

For instance: if you already have three children I'd give your idea of having a fourth one a +1 selfish score. If you're also living on minimum wage jobs I'd give that another +1. But if, say, it was your first child and you had waited to save up money despite working minimum wage jobs I'd call that a -1 on the selfish scale since you planned ahead.

I still believe that in most cases it's going to be selfish because there are just too many cases where people don't plan ahead and don't think about the consequences of having children - both for the world as a whole and for themselves and their child's sake.

-ty-
November 23rd, 2011, 10:45 AM
Now that I've been thinking about this topic for a little bit I'm starting to feel that having children isn't inherently selfish, but that there are a lot of factors that play into it which make having children more or less selfish.

For instance: if you already have three children I'd give your idea of having a fourth one a +1 selfish score. If you're also living on minimum wage jobs I'd give that another +1. But if, say, it was your first child and you had waited to save up money despite working minimum wage jobs I'd call that a -1 on the selfish scale since you planned ahead.

I still believe that in most cases it's going to be selfish because there are just too many cases where people don't plan ahead and don't think about the consequences of having children - both for the world as a whole and for themselves and their child's sake.

I agree that it all depends on the circumstances. I know several parents that live off government checks and child support, and essentially, are financially set because they have several children. The children, however, have a poor upbringing both financially and a lot of time it is lacking emotionally. Also, unless you are raking in six figures, it could be a bit selfish to have more than 5 kids.

In other circumstances, parents give up a lot in order for their children to have better lives; that sacrifice is an exemplary display of a selfless parent. Before I think about having kids I have some planning ahead to do, as Scarf states; I would have to have a stable well-paid job. I am not saying that money is the only thing that goes into selfless parenting, but it is a prerequisite if you want them to feel safe, happy, and to help them strive toward their dreams and goals.

chella182
November 23rd, 2011, 11:33 AM
People who "crank out kids" are probably doing it for the money. In this country, anyway. Honestly, if you're under 25, not disabled, not a parent and not living with your parents you barely have ANY way of making proper money to pay your rent and bills. Having children is a sure fire way of getting money like child benefit and a house if you need one! And, of course, it's better than disabling yourself!

I'm not sure where I stand on the "it's selfish to have children if you just want to be a parent" thing... I mean, I don't really want to be a parent, but it's a bit of an... "out there" thing to claim, that parents who just wanna be parents are selfish, so I'm not sure.

lacella
November 23rd, 2011, 01:05 PM
i'm just going to say, that i don't think overpopulation is the problem - i think it's the mismanagement of wealth, land and resources.

but seeing the state we currently are in, i'd have to agree with toujours - selfish things are done every day, and i'd say having a baby is one of the least on that list.

do i think it's selfish? kind of. but i also think shopping for clothes just because is selfish, when that money could be used to donate to charity, so, you know.

the only time i'd REALLY say it was selfish to have kids, was if the parents knew beforehand that they could not take care of it. condoms, peeps!

c l e a r
December 5th, 2011, 07:06 PM
Personally, their children laws are too lax all around the world. You got people that are incapable to raise children have children, and there is nothing to can be done about it; mostly due to the stupid laws and standards that have been made.

Stormbringer
December 19th, 2011, 12:45 PM
Speaking of having too many Children, the Duggar's 20th child was miscarried. People like them would fit the bill as selfish, as the OP suggested.

Mr. X
December 19th, 2011, 11:16 PM
For most couples I'd say 'Sorry for your loss'

I don't care if you think im a insensitive prick but you know what I say about the Duggars? Better luck next time. Know why I say that? Because, as history shows us, they will keep having children for as long as physically possible.

Although, I do feel sorry for them. With all the children they have, imagine the number of grandchildren they will get. I can say now, family reunion's and family gatherings are going to be pure hell due to the immense size.

Still, I've nothing against a couple having kids. Want some kids? Go ahread, have a few. But that doesn't mean you should keep making them just because you still have the ability to.

shenanigans
December 20th, 2011, 04:41 AM
Personally, their children laws are too lax all around the world. You got people that are incapable to raise children have children, and there is nothing to can be done about it; mostly due to the stupid laws and standards that have been made.

How do you judge if someone is fit to raise a child? I don't see how you could distinguish a capable parent from an incapable one in such a way that a law could be made against incapables ones having children. And then suppose the incapable one becomes pregnant anyway. Forced abortion? That's not something I'd ever like to see.

Noah Ridgewood
December 20th, 2011, 06:09 AM
I remember about five or six years ago (maybe more), my only thought about sex was: Why would anyone want to have it if they don't want to have a child? Since most humans are very, very sexual beings, having sex would mean that children would be the outcome so it just seemed logical to me that when people had sex, they were trying for a baby.

Is it selfish to not have children? I know I don't want children, and while that may change in the future, that's how I feel about it now, but this question and my feelings on having children makes me wonder if that's selfishness on my part. Isn't it within the 'cycle of life', if you will, to be born into a family, be raised by their parents, find someone they care about, settle down, have kids and start a family, and repeat the process they lived as a child, only assuming the opposite role? It seems selfish to me to not have children, as opposed to having them.

Amachi
December 20th, 2011, 08:58 AM
Wait... do people seriously think that global overpopulation is a problem? Honestly?

Now I know none of you are posting from Africa or Asia, where there is severe overpopulation problems, but none of you are talking specifically about those areas of the world either.

The West, where most of us come from and currently reside, has absolutely no current problem with overpopulation. Nothing, nadda, zilch. Any fears you have are drummed up by special interest groups (environmentalists being the main culprits), to gain support for their proposals. Governments love it because its a way for them to increase their power - just look at China for instance.

If you really wanted to curb population growth in the West, then you should be anti-immigration. They are responsible for most of the population growth in Western countries, both through arrivals and their above-average birth rates. Women in Western countries, on the other hand, are having so few children on average that in a couple of decades a population decline is expected. You don't notice this however because we keep on replacing the local population with immigrants.

In any case, overpopulation is a self-regulating problem, that is, once it becomes a problem, it solves itself. How do you ask? Well if there isn't enough for everyone to survive, then the excess members of the population will die, immediately rectifying the "overpopulation problem".

But still, if you're gullible enough to believe the world is in danger of being overpopulated, then just do what they did in the West - encourage feminism. It's the only proven way to reduce the number of children a woman has in her lifetime.

Esper
December 20th, 2011, 01:15 PM
But still, if you're gullible enough to believe the world is in danger of being overpopulated, then just do what they did in the West - encourage feminism. It's the only proven way to reduce the number of children a woman has in her lifetime.
The slight about being gullible aside, this is quite honestly the best solution (and I don't just mean to overpopulation). When women have the freedom to decide how many children they want to have (as opposed to having however many children they end up with because of lack of availability/knowledge of contraception and so on) they tend to have have fewer children than they would otherwise.

Amachi
December 23rd, 2011, 03:35 AM
The slight about being gullible aside, this is quite honestly the best solution (and I don't just mean to overpopulation). When women have the freedom to decide how many children they want to have (as opposed to having however many children they end up with because of lack of availability/knowledge of contraception and so on) they tend to have have fewer children than they would otherwise.
Why put it aside? Overpopulation is not a problem at all, and yet everyone seems to fall for the fear mongering. Our countries are suffering from decreased fertility rates anyway, and the only reason why population numbers are still increasing so much is because we keep on importing foreigners (who tend to have more children since they haven't been indoctrinated into feminism). If you are so concerned about overpopulation, then you should be anti-immigration. Then we will experience a decline in population as fertility rates will go below the replacement rate (along with a decrease in productivity as our population ages... unless we start using more robots, which is what Japan is doing).

It's not completely to do with "freedom to decide", but the pressures to put aside family for a career. However, they can't resist the natural yearnings in their womb for a family, and once they start hearing that biological clock of theirs ticking in their 30s ;), many start to have families then. Of course, by that age they are quite old and can't have as many children, hence the decline in fertility rates that are evident in countries afflicted by feminism.