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  #1    
Old June 13th, 2013, 11:21 AM
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A simple enough question: How many children should people have?

Do you feel, to any degree, that there should there be a limit for any reason? If so, in what way? How should it be enforced - with laws, an honor system, or something else? Is it someone's right to have children? If so, can someone lose that right in some way? What ways? Do concerns of overpopulation (the idea that there are too many people for the world to handle) or eugenics (people of "good breeding" having kids together and/or preventing people with "bad" genetics from having children) influence how you feel one way or the other?

Answer as few or as many questions as you like. (b'')b
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  #2    
Old June 13th, 2013, 12:15 PM
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Hmm...well, the sort of anti-benefits family I grow up in (and a bit of common sense) tells me people on low incomes shouldn't really be having 12 kids then expecting state handouts... (Although it'd be unfair to the children to push them into poverty because their parents thought "na, condoms are too expensive we'll have another one") but other than that, no I don't really think there should necessarily be limits. Except perhaps in countries that are developing fast, it has potential - what China's One Child Policy did without a doubt was prevent an exploding population becoming a supernova. Although it caused significant problems.

Eugenics? Sadly it's a bit inhumane...and I'd fear if it was adopted widespread I'd be deemed not one of the good ones xD

My geography studies have led me to come to one conclusion though...if there were to be a set guideline by governments on how many children to have it would be 3. Replacement rate is 2.1, but accidents happen so...3's safety.


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Old June 13th, 2013, 12:28 PM
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Here's a graph illustrating humanity's exponential growth, starting around 1400
Spoiler:



In today's world you should never have more kids than parents. If you're a lone parent - one kid. If you're a couple - two kids. There are over 7 billion people in the world and swiftly growing. That's my feeling anyway.

Population density per square KM:
Spoiler:


China's policy issued in the 1980's was able to curtail their growth. They've estimated that, if it wasn't implemented, they'd have an extra 400 million people running around. They currently have 1.3 billion people. China's government believes they'll have successfully reached zero population growth by 2030. Their policy has been one child per urban family, and two children per rural family.

Good news is that if you live in Canada or to a lesser extent the US, you won't have to worry about overpopulation.

2050 Population Estimates
Asia - 5.3 billion
Africa - 1.8 billion
Latin America and Caribbean - 809 million
Europe - 628 million
Canada + United States - 392 million
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Old June 13th, 2013, 12:42 PM
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Overpopulation is beginning to be a problem. Although our nation isn't suffering from it, the effects of those that are are bleeding over to ours.

Realistically, we need a few generations of couples having just one child. This will resolve our overpopulation issues. However, with how SS in the US is set up, many children are required - The next generation's tax income goes toward supporting the previous generation. We need more to support them - And then we will need twice as many to support the previous supporters.

Anyway, couples should be limited to one child - to continue their family lines. Should they desire more children, adoption is a option.

My idea? Limit to one birthed child per couple, and allow them to adopt how many ever more children they desire.

Edit - As morbid as it sounds, this is why wars, large scale world wars, are a necessity. They are, essentially, population control. Historically, this is the reason for war - A groups desire, or need, for more resources. While wars usually expend more resources then are gained, the drastically reduced population creates a surplus of resources even when accounting for all those expended.

The sad fact is that due to technological progression, a new world war would be to effective a population control. As much as a world war is needed to reign in the worlds population, with the weapons we have now a world war could easily render humanity extinct.

Edit 2 - While WW2 lead to the US experiencing a massive population boom, this was a result of the US using it's nukes. Had we instead went with a ground invasion, the massive losses would have stopped the population boom. The US had drawn up plans for a ground invasion and, either through skill or pure luck, the Japanese had entrenched the majority of their military forces in the area's that were chosen as landing points for our invasion force. The casualties were expected to be so bad that the US had made about 1.5 million Purple Hearts just for this invasion.
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Old June 13th, 2013, 01:41 PM
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They should have as many as they can emotionally and financially support, but I dont think there can be a restriction on it because too many complications come into play. However, I don't think you should get tax relief for having kids, because people do that and pop them out just to get more money from the government.

I think that birth control should be offered free everywhere, though.
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Old June 13th, 2013, 01:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kura View Post
They should have as many as they can emotionally and financially support, but I dont think there can be a restriction on it because too many complications come into play. However, I don't think you should get tax relief for having kids, because people do that and pop them out just to get more money from the government.
But on the other hand, no tax relief may mean a child has a low quality of life (although there gets to a point where tax relief doesn't make a difference, you're just poor). It needs to be means-tested. The children of Bill Gates would be fine without any tax relief. The children of Banksy, however (I'm assuming he has little income as his identity's unknown xD), may require tax relief for their parents to be able to support them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kura View Post
I think that birth control should be offered free everywhere, though.
YES. But also the Pope should be forbidden to condemn it. Manila(capital of the Philippines)'s unsustainable growth rates are partially due to 80% of the population being practising Catholics. Just one example of the problems of religion in our technologically-advanced world.
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Old June 13th, 2013, 02:03 PM
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I don't think anyone should have kids, haha. Let's all voluntarily become extinct, yeah? Kids just suck up all your money and most never appreciate it, anyway.

But seriously, let's employ some stringent policies to make natalism not so destructive to the environment and the human condition. I really like BraveNewWorld's views on single/dual parent-child proportions. Always gotta bring out the statistics, man!
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Old June 13th, 2013, 02:23 PM
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2.1. Replacement rate provides predictability, so it's good for the economy as you know what's coming.

After that, I don't really know. It's hard to even begin the grasp what it means to "determine our own destiny", whether that has any limits, and the tensions between the individual and the collective. And who are the main actors? Is it governments or individuals? And how much power does either have to influence the population question? I think it's too complex to say there's one golden way of doing it. It might be easier if you give a certain parameters and a goal in mind.
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Old June 13th, 2013, 02:34 PM
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I don't like the idea of telling people that they shouldn't have x amount of kids. If you want to have kids, that's fine. If you don't, that's fine.
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  #10    
Old June 13th, 2013, 02:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kura View Post
They should have as many as they can emotionally and financially support, but I dont think there can be a restriction on it because too many complications come into play. However, I don't think you should get tax relief for having kids, because people do that and pop them out just to get more money from the government.
I agree with all of that but the tax thing.

I don't think tax relief for having children would be good, however, tax relief through through income splitting would go along way to helping out families.

Normally, a household of two people, who both make $75,000 a year (so that's $150,000 for the household), for example, would pay less than a household family of four with a single income earner making $150,000 because they're paying a lower income bracket individually. Though the household has the same amount of income, the family where one parent is staying home to look after the kids pays more tax. Following countries like France, where tax is based per household than per person, I think that's something that could really help out families.

Anyway, my thoughts on the matter are that people should be smart and responsible about when, how many, and why they're having kids and put consideration into how you would raise (and afford to raise) them. Unfortunately, you cannot police intelligence - nor should you.
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  #11    
Old June 13th, 2013, 02:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amore View Post
But on the other hand, no tax relief may mean a child has a low quality of life (although there gets to a point where tax relief doesn't make a difference, you're just poor). It needs to be means-tested. The children of Bill Gates would be fine without any tax relief. The children of Banksy, however (I'm assuming he has little income as his identity's unknown xD), may require tax relief for their parents to be able to support them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kura View Post
I think that birth control should be offered free everywhere, though.
YES. But also the Pope should be forbidden to condemn it. Manila(capital of the Philippines)'s unsustainable growth rates are partially due to 80% of the population being practising Catholics. Just one example of the problems of religion in our technologically-advanced world.
Not necessarily. If having no tax relief means you can't afford a child.. then don't have a child. Sometimes things happen and it can't be helped, but offering people automatic tax relief just sounds.. a bit sketchy. I think every case should be screened properly like they SHOULD be doing with welfare cases. Maybe tax relief for one, but any more after that no one gets anything else from the government.


Yes, but law also states that religion should not influence government. The church and the government are not one, and they should not be ruled as one due to conflicts of interest. The fact that it is affected by that, and even by topics like same sex marriage make me shake my head in disbelief for it. Yet it is what it is.. I am only stating what I feel should happen though. Birth control should be offered freely, but not mandatory to take it, of course.
However, even in countries like Canada, it's not free. In the UK.. it is free. The way I see it, it costs the government a lot less to give out free birth control pills than to hand out state benefits for children.

It's not about forbidding anyone to have kids, it's about giving them the choice not to, and giving them consequences for taking advantage of the system for once, instead of going along for a free ride on their boat made of babies.
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  #12    
Old June 13th, 2013, 03:32 PM
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1. I don't have the right to pass such a judgement.
2. No, it doesn't concern me.
3. People will do what they want.
4. Restricting people from doing something usually makes them want to do it more.
5. Nice avatar, OP! ^ ^
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  #13    
Old June 13th, 2013, 04:46 PM
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Kinda like what Kura said, people should have as many children as they can care for, and by care for I mean completely care for, emotionally and physically, so that the kids grow up to be intelligent and contributing members of society. However, those two prerequisites disqualify a lot of people. But you cannot force limitations like what China has and still call yourself a free society. The real way to combat overpopulation, unwanted pregnancies, dependent classes, etc, is responsible sexual education, plain and simple. Remove the ridiculous taboos in place and you will see many of these problems disappear.
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Old June 13th, 2013, 05:23 PM
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I think the population transition will come to all developing regions of the world, even Africa, with enough time. The consequences of economic modernization on family planning seems to be inevitable. Perhaps the question is if we want the poorer countries to get to where we are, in terms of family sizes, faster?
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Old June 13th, 2013, 06:55 PM
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Here's a sad billboard in Ethiopia urging adults to consider the effects of too many children.
Spoiler:


Here are some worrying statistics concerning overpopulation.


If trends continue, by 2025, 1.8 billion people will be living with absolute water scaricty. And two thirds of the world population will begin to feel the effect.

Four countries; Libya, Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Yemen have hit peak water. That's 60 million people.

Six countries; Bahrain, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Oman, and Qatar have nearly hit peak water. That's 23 million people.

The number of overweight people (over 1 billion) is passed the number of malnourished people (about 800 million).

The Earth will have to produce 70% more food by 2050, to sustain the population - which is expected to have grown by 2.3 billion.

Developed nations consume 32 times the amount of resources developing countries consume. Developing countries take up the majority of the world's population.

1 barrel of oil costs in excess of 100 US dollars, 65 British pounds, and 75 euros.

Those aged 65 or more currently make up between 10-15% of the human population. This is expected to double by 2050. The elderly (who are passed working age) only consume resources, they do not produce, making this a major problem
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Old June 13th, 2013, 07:37 PM
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Old June 14th, 2013, 01:33 AM
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However many they can afford to care for emotionally, physically, spiritually, and financially.
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Old June 14th, 2013, 02:25 AM
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The number should equal the amount you can support and only that. I hate, hate, hate that the government give child support to people who clearly have no interest in spending on the kids. I just don't like the child support system in the first place, because the reality is, if you can't support a child then, well, you should have really thought about it better; you made your bed, so you lie in it, is my pretty blunt attitude to it.
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Old June 14th, 2013, 03:51 AM
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I personally don't want to tell people how many they can have, but realistically a limit is going to have to be placed sometime and it's most likely going to be 1 child per couple until we solve many other issues.

Space and food aren't the only issues. More people means we need to produce more energy, and even a country with Americas low population growth these extra energy demands will be more disastrous than they are now.

Unless we have a plague, a war with considerable losses, or a much welcomed increase in homosexuality, overpopulation will exacerbate our economic and enviromental issues to the extreme.

I wouldn't set an exact limit, perhaps, but I would see to it that people were educated on the impact of having many children, and hope they make the selfless, responsible decision on their own. Free, accessible birth control would help tons but that is just another progressive thing being pushed aside by morons.
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  #20    
Old June 14th, 2013, 04:20 AM
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Rather than laws that limit the amount of children someone can have, I think that birth control should be encouraged, free and readily available. Especially in areas where abortion is discouraged or illegal.

The child policy in China has resulted in gender-selective abortion and infanticide as I'm sure everyone's aware, I believe there was something like 115 boys per 100 girls born in 2010. I don't think it's the correct thing to be doing.

People shouldn't have their right to reproduce taken away, especially if it forces abortions or sterilization, they are invasive surgeries.

Gentle encouragement to use birth control and awareness of the overpopulation would be helpful. And free birth control should just be the law everywhere, in my opinion.
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Old June 14th, 2013, 06:38 AM
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I'm of the opinion that there shouldn't really be a 'limit' on how many children people can have and that it should be left up to the parents to make the decision as to the amount of offspring they'll bear. If they realistically feel they can only support two kids, let them have two kids. If they realistically feel they can support ten kids, let them have ten kids.
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Old June 14th, 2013, 01:41 PM
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Lots have said people should only have as many kids as they can support, which I agree with, and that we need to really encourage sexual education and contraception use, which I also agree with, but what do we do when someone has more kids than they can support? Let's sat you've got someone and, oops!, they suddenly find they're having another kid. Maybe they were careless, maybe they were careful but it still happened. Do we stay strict and say "No, you weren't supposed to have more than you could take care of. You get no help." or do we say "Well, it's not the kid's fault. We'll help, but don't let it happen again."

On a side note, I was reading around and learned that every new mother in Finland gets a maternity package with a bunch of things a newborn baby would need. For free, care of the government, as long as you get checked out by doctors. It helps to keep women healthy by ensuring they've got extra incentive to see the doctor. I know this kind of thing would seem to encourage more people to have kids, but if there was some kind of reverse program, one that tied contraception education to something else people wanted, like, I dunno, a small tax break or something, do you think that would be a good idea?
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Old June 14th, 2013, 01:53 PM
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It seems like there is this assumption that these parents are together and sitting down to make rational decisions. I am not sure if the encouragement and education will deter younger people from having more children.

Further, laws actually support women in having multiple children given the child support and welfare laws. Essentially, a woman can make a living by producing children. Even with the education what is to deter her from producing more children given that she doesn't have to work for the next 20 years of her life?

I agree completely that men and women should have easy access to birth control and abortion clinics need be. But this still doesn't address the issue posited above.

My proposal would be to address welfare laws in culmination with education and easy affordable access to birth control/abortion clinics. Those receiving welfare should receive welfare as any employee receives a check. You get paid for your services. Those who receive welfare have two responsibilities: household financial manger, that must conform to guidelines to ensure the child(ren) receive adequate care, and they must perform civil services such as public works projects (clean-up, garbage, infrastructure improvement) or some other type of work in exchange for receiving funds. Essentially, you give a person both a job and money rather than just money.

This, I believe would discourage women that seek to produce children as a career. Thus, lowering the birth rate among the indigent. Again, I am not saying that all or most women do this. Even men and women who do receive welfare did not choose to do so. They may have lost a job or spouse and cannot afford to provide care for children. Nevertheless, providing these people a job and pay (welfare), is both a helping hand and act of self-reliance, and therefore this form of welfare would not feel like a "hand-out", and rather, give a person a sense of pride.

On the other hand, I know of several families (both single-parent or nuclear) with low-income that work and provide adequate care for their children. In this case, the parent(s) need not be penalized, since they are exercising personal responsibility without costing the state, and other hard-working tax payers for raising their children.

Therefore, the laws need to be amended to fit this principle:

"The number of children one can have should be limited to the number of children the parents are willing and able to provide adequate care for"...and if circumstances change, the government can provide you a temporary job to supplement job loss or unemployment to parent(s).
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Old June 14th, 2013, 02:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Fabio View Post
The number should equal the amount you can support and only that. I hate, hate, hate that the government give child support to people who clearly have no interest in spending on the kids. I just don't like the child support system in the first place, because the reality is, if you can't support a child then, well, you should have really thought about it better; you made your bed, so you lie in it, is my pretty blunt attitude to it.
And the people that had the money/ability to support their child when they had them, but eventually lost their source of income? There's so many things to consider in such a matter . . . I agree that people who had to be on it from the get-go because they're idiots that just keep having children shouldn't get such benefits, but of the regular, everyday people that can't make ends meet after a while? There are exceptions to every rule . . . and in cases such as these, you just can't look at it with one general glance. And I take this personally, to be honest.

As for the actual topic of this thread, I think people should be able to have as many children as they can handle and support in every aspect. Although, more than half a dozen is certainly pushing it.

On the other hand, I do think there needs to be less people on this planet, but that's a whole other topic. . . . Lol
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Old June 14th, 2013, 04:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Miss Anne Thrope View Post
Rather than laws that limit the amount of children someone can have, I think that birth control should be encouraged, free and readily available. Especially in areas where abortion is discouraged or illegal.

The child policy in China has resulted in gender-selective abortion and infanticide as I'm sure everyone's aware, I believe there was something like 115 boys per 100 girls born in 2010. I don't think it's the correct thing to be doing.

People shouldn't have their right to reproduce taken away, especially if it forces abortions or sterilization, they are invasive surgeries.

Gentle encouragement to use birth control and awareness of the overpopulation would be helpful. And free birth control should just be the law everywhere, in my opinion.
I agree, those are the things I hate about China's one child child policy, that it's invasive and forceful. Governments of nations with high population density should try to enact population policies with the things you've mentioned on here, birth control, that's prevents pregnancy but is also healthy for the user.
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