MIDWAY : Demographic dilemma

More than 12 million species, including the Homo sapiens, inhabit Earth. That these living beings continue to make babies goes to prove that, primarily, they are not fed up with this far-from-perfect world of ours. The world is actually enough, and over 6.7 billion human beings ubiquitously inhabit this planet.

All the same, it seems the demography is not satisfactory enough. Many western countries like Germany and France are worried over the fact that more and more ‘couples’ there wish to have no children. Sadly, more than 50% of marriages there end up in divorce, the corollary being sharp decrease in the number of children.

Germany has been witnessing a dwindling birth rate for a couple of decades: German women have an average of 1.37 children. Since January 2008, the government has offered to provide 25,000 Euro to parents — for each newly-born — to encourage them not to have a child, but children. Other countries are resorting to similar schemes as well.

Ironically, a German couple recently did something unconventional — they put their 7-month baby for auction — beginning with 1 Euro — on eBay, citing that the baby cried a lot. The uncaring couple had even provided all details on the child — height, weight, etc. — to the eventual auctioneers. When persecuted by the police, the mother said it was just a joke. A cruelly childish joke, indeed! A new prohibitory law, therefore, might soon come into being — in Germany and elsewhere — online sale of children PROHIBITED!

Well, the world is not free of people who crack a child’s life like a joke. Dark and filthy corners of Kathmandu offer a ghastly evidence: they accommodate over 6,000 street children. They are perhaps the creatures coming down from the glittering sky scrapers all around. And they all live on the filthy mountains of garbage, searching in vain for pearls, plastic and paper coming down from the same skyscrapers.

The world is a more beautiful and interesting place to live with all the species making new babies. The children of humans are a fascination on the face of the earth. But if they are made for online sale or for deserting in the inhospitable streets, it’s perhaps better not to have them at all.