Seven billion miracles


The United Nations has reported that the Earth’s population will reach seven billion by the end of this month.

There are two differing opinions about this population increase. The first is that we need to intervene to protect ourselves from overpopulation and overconsumption using a tactic along the lines of China’s one-child policy.

The opposing view is that with more people, there is more potential to solve problems such as the proper distribution of resources to prevent global ecological problems. After all, if two heads are better than one, then seven billion heads must be better than six billion.

I’m not against natural family planning when it comes to a family’s socio-economic position, but I am against treating humans as animals whose breeding habits need to be controlled with scrutiny.

After all, when taking a look at individuals such as the late Steve Jobs, the Kielburger brothers and Mother Teresa, I’d like to think we have more potential and rationality than a bunch of rabbits.

In today’s world filled with numbers, we’re convinced by the adage attributed to Stalin, “One death is a tragedy; one million is a statistic.” China’s now 30-year-old one-child policy is responsible for problems such as sterilization, abandonment, forced abortions and human trafficking — broadly labelled female “gendercide.” There are 37 million more men in China today than females, primarily for this reason. Parents who birth a female often end up trying for a boy — a more desirable option.

This then leads me into the discussion about what the odds are of existing in this world full of numbers. How much are we ‘worth’ in a world of seven billion?

According to Dr. Ali Binazir, the odds of your existence are one in 10^2,685,000 — this takes into account the probability of each generation of your ancestors successfully meeting and reproducing.

Miracles are usually associated with divine intervention or a statistically unlikely but beneficial happenstance. If your birth and life is one in 10^2,685,000, then we shouldn’t need to initiate a limit on children in the future, nature already does it for us.

In this sense, you’re a miracle. Live like one.


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