Tuesday, April 06, 2004

The nation gets older?

On BBC Newsnight (Britain's most esteemed TV news program) this evening, the feature was once again about Asylum, legal and illegal immigrants. The usual left and right sides of the political spectrum were presented, and although attempting to be rational, both typically stuck like glue to their football teams. The middle man, chosen to present the balanced view, proposed yet again that the only approach was to consider the demographic projections for this country's population. He repeated the old argument that as we all are getting older, we need people for our economy. (see also They were good for the British economy).

Well, isn't it strange that nobody is saying that maybe people in Britain should have more babies?

Why doesn't anyone in Britain want to have babies? Since contraception is an inarguable human right, nowadays the continuation of the species has to arise out of choice, and not by accident. The lack of discussion about the fear of having and raising children is the most insidious impotence in the West.

A sociologist in Toronto brought out a book last month, identifying that people in Western society are refusing to grow up. In other words, perhaps our problem is not that we are getting older, but that we grow up too late. There has been a lot of cheering for Des O'Connor who has at 72 fathered a new child. That's all very well for him as he is a man, but a woman over the age of 45 has a poor chance of becoming a new parent.

Wealth has proven to be the most successful contraceptive that has ever been invented. In East London, where a constant stream of new arrivals feeds the lowest tier of wealth in this city, it's easy enough to find families with children. Well isn't that the ultimate in laziness, when apart from importing all material products and consumer goods, your economy also has to import immigrants to have the children ? It does make me feel guilty for being gay.

Ps. Representing the "Left" was Bernard Crick, Government Advisor on Citizenship ; the "Right" was Patrick O'Flynn, Political Editor, 'Daily Express'; and the "middle man" was Richard Lewis, Former Deputy Head ,EU Asylum & Immigration Unit

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