If you read the Daily Mail you’ll know that there are far too many immigrants in Britain, and they are stealing our jobs. If you’re a Guardian reader, you’ll realise that this is narrow-minded thinking, and the real problem is that there are too many people on the planet as a whole, and we are destroying it.
It doesn’t matter which newspaper you read. It seems that there are too many people and something must be done. Middle-class couples are limiting the size of their families, to avoid the patter of tiny carbon footprints. By contrast, giant pandas must be saved at all costs, especially from their own reluctance to procreate.
Recently, the eminent naturalist David Attenborough said that humans are “a plague on the Earth” and that “there is no major problem facing our planet that would not be easier to solve if there were fewer people.”
Is that a good solution? Kill the humans? I don’t see Sir David queuing up to be the first to be exterminated. And that’s good. Because I personally prefer living people to dead ones. Even when they say stupid, annoying things.
I feel like I’m in an unfashionable minority here, but I want to strongly disagree with this sentiment that people are the problem.
It’s possible that we are unique, not only on Earth, but in the entire galaxy or even universe. We might be the only beings truly capable of universal thought. We might be the only beings capable of love. We might be the most marvellous beings in the history of everything. We might just be pretty damn awesome.
If David Attenborough suggested that some ethnic, religious or other group of people was a plague on the Earth, then he would be universally condemned. How does widening his venom to include all of humanity make his comments somehow acceptable?
Can I take this opportunity to suggest that there is no major problem facing our planet that would not be easier to solve if there were fewer people spouting this kind of hate?