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Rationalizing sterility August 22, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, foolishness, General Catholic, sadness, scandals, sickness, Society.

I found this article from Bloomberg, seeking to explain why the fertility rate in the US keeps dropping, disturbing.  It seems more and more couples/women are rationalizing their decision not to have children:

Debra Mollen, 41, a psychology professor in Denton, Texas, said she and her husband don’t plan to have children as they strive to pay down their mortgage and save for retirement.

“Children are really expensive,” Mollen said, and the 2008 financial crisis shows the importance of building a nest egg. “Retirement is not an option for a lot of folks.” [There’s an old saying I’ve heard many times, “if you wait until you can “afford” children, you’ll never have them.  In reality, there are simply higher priorities that reproduction]

Mollen isn’t alone, as Americans have had fewer babies each year since the 2008 financial meltdown, with births falling to a 12-year low in 2011, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. The low birth rate and reduced immigration resulted in the smallest gain in population since World War II, which may hurt spending on everything from Huggies diapers to pregnancy kits, child care and education.

“Consumption bumps up when families have children,” said Dean Maki, chief U.S. economist at Barclays Plc in New York, who worked at the Federal Reserve from 1995 to 2000, and researched household finances. “The fact we are seeing fewer births is something of a drag on consumer spending. To the extent this turns out to be a persistent trend, it is something to be worried about.”

……..The decision to have children goes beyond finances as some women focus on careers, or their relationship with a spouse, and want time for other interests, said Mollen, a professor at Texas Woman’s University who has written that “childfree women” face social pressures to become mothers.

Still, “I do think money factors into it,” she said. “Certainly, income has to be considered.”

The trend toward marrying later in life may also be resulting in fewer births.

Alyssa Hunter, 38, a health-care researcher in Minneapolis, wed three years ago and said she and her husband are not planning on starting a family, citing the increased health risk in having a baby later in life and the difficulty in raising children near retirement.

“I can’t imagine having enough energy to deal with a teenager when I am 60,” she said.

The median age for a first marriage in 2011 was 28.7 years for men and 26.5 years for women, each up by 1 year or more from 2006, before the recession, Census data show. The number of marriages dropped to 6.8 per 1,000 people in 2010 from 7.6 in 2005, according to the National Center for Health Statistics in Hyattsville, Maryland.

Long term population declines have historically been harbingers of not only economic, but cultural collapse.  From time immemorial, most cultures evolved a sort of……I don’t know if taboo is the right word, but attitude that married, childless women were sort of looked down on.  Nowadays, doing so would be seen as cruel and heartless, but I wonder if mechanisms like that, or the cultural shunning of bastards and the women who bore them  in past cultures were not a sort of societal defense mechanism built into those cultures to insure a healthy, growing population of children raised in homes with a mom and dad.

But then again, perhaps people in times past better understood that the civilization we enjoy is historically a great anomaly, and not the inevitable result of the proletarian forces marching boldly into a brave new future!  It is a fragile thing.  We’re doing a lot of things wrong, the consequences of which we can really only guess at, but the precedents for which are almost universally bad to disastrous.  In our increasingly a-religious, self-deifying society, we’re playing with fire more and more, and I think we’re fooling ourselves if we think there won’t be a tremendous, calamitous price to pay one day.




1. Jordan H. - August 22, 2012

The last prophecy Our Lord made: “For behold, the days shall come, wherein they will say: Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that have not borne, and the paps that have not given suck.” Luke 23:29

Certainly, we are in those times… The outcome from the shift in the role of women coupled with contraception in the past eighty years is catastrophic. It used to be that a 21 year old unmarried girl was considered an old maid. Such an observation nowadays is laughable by “modern man.” .

2. AMK - August 27, 2012

There seems little difference then between fruitless copulation and homosexual copulation. In both the objective is gratification.

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