By SADIA J. CHOUDHURY
When we think about having kids, most of our minds go toward positive thoughts such as “starting my own family!” and “having my own child!” because what can go wrong with starting a family or having kids? That is every couple’s dream. In the article, “An Environmental Case for Not Having Kids” the author Marianna Keen thinks otherwise. She argues that having kids is causing great harm to the environment in many different ways. She also believes that the people who call her selfish for not having kids are even more selfish for having their own because of the high rate of orphans. From my perspective, I believe that having kids is harming our environment in multiple ways. Nevertheless, not having kids is going to harm us in the future in other aspects such as economically.
Before anything, in the article, the author uses studies done by scientists to prove her point of how having kids is harming the environment. She states the study held in 2009 by scientists at the Oregon State University who found out and learned that having one less kid is equal to doing environment-friendly things. It is very persuasive because the points she makes, the facts she gives, and her personal opinions are very strong throughout the article. She sounds confident in what she is talking about. The article is somewhat biased since she shares her own opinions and experiences a little bit throughout the article. She states that not having kids can also bring personal benefits other than protecting the environment such as working on personal goals and getting to spend more time with family and friends. This sort of weakens her premise.
Secondly, I agree with the author because having kids is looked upon very positively in our society. However, people tend to ignore the bigger issues having kids might cause such as negatively affecting the environment. The thought of how having kids can negatively affect the earth never crosses people’s minds. According to THE WEEK, a website for blogs about trending topics, in the article “The ethics of having children in the age of climate change” the author Kate Samuelson, examines and talks about the effects of having children on our climate. She states, “A 2017 study published in Environmental Research journal by Canadian climate scientists found that a child born into the global north left a 58.6 metric tonne carbon footprint annually, on average”. This study shows how much carbon footprint a new human life leaves. This further proves the author’s point that having kids affects the environment negatively.
Thirdly, I can agree with the author however much I want but I can not ignore the fact that there are always two sides to the coin. If we start to have a decrease in newborn babies it will affect our economy negatively. According to CBS NEWS, a website for everyday news, in the article “Experts sound the alarm on declining birth rates among younger generations: “It’s a crisis“, One of the authors of the website talks about the growing issue of declining birth rates that will cause us serious harm in the future. University of Southern California Professor Dowell Myers, who was interviewed in the article states, “We need to have enough working-age people to carry the load of these seniors, who deserve their retirement, they deserve all their entitlements, and they’re gonna live out another 30 years,” he said. “Nobody in the history of the globe has had so many older people to deal with”. I think he makes a good point because if the birth rates keep declining we will not have anyone to replace us which will not cause extinction but will cause our economy and most likely other aspects severe harm.
In conclusion, I believe that having no kids can bring less environmental damage. However, this might cause us humans harm in other aspects. As I stated there are always two sides to the coin.