Maybe you've seen that new film Babies, says Courtney Martin
"don't be fooled by their innocent appearance." Though "many mothers I
know say that having a child is the most miraculous experience they've
ever had ... turns out, harsh as it sounds, that it's also one of the
most environmentally irresponsible."
Writing at The American
Prospect, Martin explains that "thus far, consuming via baby-making has
been a no-judgment zone for most Americans, even the most 'green' among
us." Environmentalists haven't quite been ready to judge each other for
having kids, even though Oregon State University statistician Paul
Murtaugh says having a child negates all the rest of the green
decisions a consumer can make and then some. Supposedly contraception
and female education in the developing world is supposed to solve all
these problems, but Martin points out that "as of 2005, women in 18 of
the 24 wealthiest nations were having more babies than in previous
years"--in other words, countries with plenty of contraception and
education aren't actually slowing down their pace of reproduction. So the "problem" persists.
"It's easy to understand why we don't weigh these public
in our procreation decisions," Martin says, "but it doesn't make it right."
Want to add to this story? Let us know in comments
or send an email to the author at
hhorn at theatlantic dot com.
You can share ideas for stories on the Open Wire.