... are starved, that 45, 000 children lose their lives each day, and that 1. 2 billion hectares of land have been eroded and stripped of agricultural productivity since 1945 is dismissed as the product of misallocate economic systems and poor farming methods. (Hardaway 2) In the United States many look at the situations occurring in third world and developing Nations and think that it is not our problem.
We never stop to realize that yes, maybe it is worse in those nations, but we are quickly letting it happen to our country. Many United States citizens desire varied diets, comfortable homes, the ability to travel to exotic and beautiful places and solitude, spacious conditions to live, and other everyday things we enjoy. (Ehrlich 1) If the growth continues we will all be eating laboratory made food, living in high rise building that are filled to capacity, the opportunities to travel will not exist because all the land will be ruined, and things that we once enjoyed will no longer be able to be done. This may seem like a pessimistic view, but if the problem is not fixed it is the only outcome.
"The United States already has the world's third largest population, 268 million people. China is number one with 1. 24 billion, India number two with 970 million, and Indonesia number four with 205 million. Compared to other industrialized countries, the American population is growing at a record rate of more than one percent per year (if immigration is included)." (Ehrlich 1) Constantly in the debate over population we hear the term optimum and sustainable population size. Many are unaware of what this is and how it would be beneficial.
On this planet there is only so much room for everyone as well as again resources, the optimum population is a number that correlates with the amount of people that can live on earth given certain technological advances along with certain social conditions. It is also the amount of people it will take for the environment to remain intact and somewhat healthy. The optimal population of Earth is actually two billion people, about one-third the current number. The maximum population capacity is another term that comes into discussion; this is the amount of people that can be supported off technology and other advances the human race has made, if the population proceeds to this number comfortable living would be out of the picture. The control of population is not something that has a simple answer. There have been many different attempts made to solve this problem, and many that have failed.
In 1974, the United Nations held a conference to gather information and to try to create a plan that would work for all nations. The main objectives were to help the environment to continue to grow as well as to ensure a happy and healthy future for all of humankind. They decided all couples and individuals would always have free choice whether they would bear children as long as they were provided for. The U. N. decided that the plan they were to create would have to be flexible and would promote women and the roles of women.
The promotion of birth control was to be used in countries that were attempting to lower their birthrates. They also developed twenty-one possible resolutions to the population explosion. Among these were: Creating programs in rural areas, co-operating with international organizations, eliminating all social practices and legislation's that discriminate on grounds sex, taking measures in education and training, equal participation of men and women in policymaking, intensify world's food programs, make effort to cope with multidimensional and complex problems of population development resources environment. The United States single-handed ly expanded research in human reproduction and population dynamics in order to find better methods to reduce fertility and increase birth control. Many departments of the government are specifically designated to form and clarify policies to help gather information on population, sterility, and family planning. In 1965, President Kennedy had established a group to attempt to create a policy to control the growing population.
The group was known as AID, this organization was willing to help with certain funding but not with any funding for contraceptives. 'Advisory teams from AID have been sent to India, Pakistan, Egypt, Turkey, Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, and Jamaica to discuss family planning programs, and too many other countries to discuss population problems.' (Lee 90) Although their efforts were valiant, they were not successful. The populations in these areas still continued to soar high and increase at extreme rates. Many fear that the attempt to control the rapid growing population will have an affect on human rights. Some are worried that soon the amount of children a woman can bear will be limited as it once was in China. "Yet such repression has been seen in a relatively few instances, notably in China from local enforcement of the one-child family policy.
In the mid-1970 s, the Indian government tried to enforce a three-child limit for government employees, for which Indira Gandhi lost her seat as prime minister." (Ehrlich 1) Other feel that if there were certain rewards for limiting the amount of children that a family has more would be willing to oblige. Another large debate is that of abortion, if it is made illegal how will the population be affected? If a woman does not wish to have a child should the choice be left to her or the government? If abortions were made a normal practice, would the population rise be affected at all? These are all valid concerns for women to consider, but most likely none of them are in the near future. In my personal view, I have found that what the United Nations and the United States are attempting to do now is not working. I believe if this problem is to be solved the focus can not lye only on the people and the birth rate, but there must be work done on the environment and resources in the mean time. If the United Nations can put an end to poverty then it could quite possibly have an affect on the lowering of the population. If citizens could afford contraceptives and family planning then they would no longer be forced to have numerous undesired children.
In addition, if people we properly educated on the effect the population has on the earth they would put more consideration into having children. Political support from the highest levels in the state is essential in making family planning both widely available and widely used. I feel more funding should be put towards issues such as this and less towards the development of weapons and war. Today our world is being faced with many difficult problems. With new technologies come even more troubles. Not only as a Nation, but also as a planet a solution to population needs to be created.
If the world wishes to flourish and go on for many years to come the population growth needs to be stabilized. Developed countries including the United States need to take a stand and help Developing Nations with funding for contraceptives as well as with funding for poverty and education. With simple steps such as these the population may see some drop in the rate of growth. Not only is it the governments job to balance the population, but people must make effort as well.
It is the governments' job to educate the people, but in the end the citizens make the decisions. Works CitedBayles, Michael D. Morality and Population Policy. University, AL: University of Alabama, 1980.
Black, Eugene R. 'Population Increase and Economic Development.' Our Crowded Planet, Essays on the Pressures of Population. Ed. Osborn, Fairfield. 1 st ed. Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1962.
83-91. Darling, Frank Fraser. 'The Population Explosion and the Natural Environment.' Our Crowded Planet, Essays on the Pressures of Population. Ed. Osborn, Fairfield. 1 st ed.
Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1962. 71-79. Darwin, Charles G. 'The Law of Population Increase.' Our Crowded Planet, Essays on the Pressures of Population.
Ed. Osborn, Fairfield. 1 st ed. Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1962. 29-35. Ehrlich, Paul R.
, and Anne H. Ehrlich. Eco science: Population, Resources, Environment. San Francisco: W.
H. Freeman, 1977. Hardaway, Robert M. Population, Law, and the Environment.
Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers, 1994. Hertz ler, J. O. The Crisis in World Population: A Sociological Examination, with Special Reference to the Underdeveloped Areas. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1956.
Lee, Philip R. 'The Development of Federal Policies Related to Population Problems.' The 99 th Hour: The Population Crisis in the United States. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1967. 84-94. Managing Planet Earth: Perspectives on Population, Ecology, and the Law. Westport, CT: Bergin & Garvey, 1990.
Sadi k, Naf is. 'World Population Continues to Rise.' The Futurist Mar. -Apr. 1991: 9+. Questia. 11 May 2004..