Saturday, November 27, 2010

Ban on contaceptives proposed

Senator Hokkons Baules of Palau has introduced a bill calling for contraceptives to be banned in the island nation. The bill, the "Population Growth Act of 2011", is hoped to turn the tide against the shrinking population. Palau has a population of around 20 000 people with a growth rate of 0.3%.

Read more.

Idiot Savant of No Right Turn has harsh words for the bill:

"Palau is trying to ban all forms of contraception. The reason? To boost the country's population. Too many Palauans have been choosing to have smaller families, and those who measure the success of their country by the size of its population (the ideology of a cancer cell) want to put a stop to it.

Quite apart from the obvious liberal grounds for objecting to this decision - what people do in their bedrooms and how many kids they have are simply none of the government's business - there's also a large degree of simple revulsion at such barbarism. Contraception is a fundamental, transformative technology which frees us from nature. Banning it is taking people back to the dark ages and making them slaves to circumstance again. Its like banning sewage systems. Or literacy. If people want to live like that, or live in impoverished parts of the world where such technologies are out of reach, that's one thing (and the latter, we can work to fix). But forcing them to is simply abhorrent.

[my emphasis]

Yes, nature can be barbaric, red in tooth and claw, but if Palau doesn't start promoting the next generation of citizens it is going to cease to exist. What people do in their bedrooms is absolutely the government's business. If it wasn't why have marriages recorded by the state with specific rules about who can and can not be married to each other? We are not mere individuals, we are families and communities. Our actions have an effect on our wider society and Palau is trying to stop itself from a population implosion.

No matter how the Western world tries to run from the laws of nature we can never escape. Societies must have babies if they are to continue. Contraception and abortion have changed the landscape of human experience, they have made marriage an optional extra and our families are less stable for that.