Steve N Allen Column: If we trebled UK birthrate it would hardly move the dial on the global numbers

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Have you heard of pronatalism? It’s the hottest new topic for the right and left to row about on the internet. One pronatalist, Aria Babu, spoke this week saying, “Our future depends on us having plenty of children”, says comedian and writer Steve N Allen.

A wise person once said: “I believe the children are our future. Teach them well and let them lead the way.” That was Whitney Houston and look what happened to her.

The theory is that we need to have more children if the economy of the UK is going to work.

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Aria Babu was explaining that the welfare state will not remain sustainable unless the UK can halt the decline in its birthrate. We need to have more children who will grow up to be economically active grown-ups supporting the increasing number of pensioners in the future.

Guest columnist Steve N Allen is a writer and comedian.Guest columnist Steve N Allen is a writer and comedian.
Guest columnist Steve N Allen is a writer and comedian.

Have you noticed that people who say we need to have lots of children don’t have children themselves? Babu does not have children but would like to in the future. It’s easy to say these things when you’re only talking about the theory.

Most of my day is taken up with my two children but sadly having two isn’t enough to keep the pronatalists happy. Statistically you need to have an average of 2.1 children to stop the population decline.

The problem is, in real life, you can’t have 2.1. If you want to have more than two children you end up with three.

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Rich nations tend to slow down having kids. That tells us that when people have nothing else to do in life having a large family is a good option but as soon as we have holidays, TVs and the internet, people don’t want to spend all their time dealing with nappies.

Elon Musk is a famous pronatalist. He has said we should all be having lots of children, but when you’re the world’s richest man you can just about afford childcare costs. He has said the Earth should have ten billion people on it. He argues with that many people we could have ten Mozarts living at one time. That’s true but we could also have a couple of hundred Ted Bundys.

The other side of the argument comes from people like Sir David Attenborough who has said we risk stretching the resources of the planet if we have too many humans living on it.

The good news is that we’re the UK. If we trebled our birthrate it would hardly move the dial on the global numbers. So go forth and multiply. It’ll be something fun to do on the


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