It's one thing for prolifers to believe this, but quite another to hear it from a writer whose heart is with the prochoice side: The future belongs to the fecund. That's the conclusion of pundit James Pinkerton, writing for Tech Central Station about a Planned Parenthood fundraiser featuring Lou Reed and several other celebrities. Pinkerton's essay is a mix of on-site reporting and trend-spotting.
First he notices that some prolife protesters don't fit the expected profile:
Politely penned up by watching cops, the peaceful and proper sign-holders weren't a bunch of little old ladies from Dubuque or Pasadena; they were mostly young, mostly female, mostly non-white. Amidst the familiar messages -- "Planned Parenthood Kills" and "It's a crime that a child must die, so you can live as you wish" -- were other signs that were in themselves a sign of the times: "Pro vida, sin excepciones."
He soon gets down to numbers-crunching:
The basic freedoms guaranteed by Roe are still intact, to be sure, but as both sides in the debate argue, just one more anti-Roe justice on the Supreme Court could reverse that ruling.
So what happened? I think a lot of the answer can be found in birth-rate differentials -- demography is destiny. To put it bluntly, in the name of "empowerment," the Left has birth-controlled, aborted, and maybe also gay-libbed itself into a smaller role in American society. Yes, it was their personal-is-political choice, but others will benefit politically. We might consider, as just one example, what's happened to New York City. In 1973, the Big Apple had a population of about eight million; the population of the United States overall was 211 million. In 2004, the Apple was still at around eight million, but the country's population, in the meantime, had increased by nearly two-fifths. It's not automatically a bad thing for a population to stay stagnant -- unless, of course, the goal is to wield power through the ballot box.
The heart of his essay, at least for GetReligion, comes when Pinkerton considers the work of Charles Galton Darwin, grandson of Charles and the author of a Malthusian text called The Next Million Years (1952):
And so the more recent Darwin offered a grim prediction: the future of the world belongs to illiberal religions. Or, if you prefer, conservative religions, including not only Christianity, but also Islam and Hinduism. How come? Because those faiths that emphasize traditionalism, including traditional sex roles, are more likely to be procreative. In modern countries, feminists are free to be feminists, but if they don't have feminist children -- which is to say, boys and girls who sustain the "free to be . . . you and me" philosophy -- then the politics of the future will be shaped by those hands that do, in fact, rock the cradle -- after putting a baby inside.