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This section was my workspace for philosophy essays between July 2006 and April 2008. I call this "Prehistoric Kilroy" because it gave me practice for more disciplined essays in Kilroy Cafe. Also see my philophical blog and Twitter feed.

Issue #49, 12/17/2006

The Nightmare Planet
— or —
A Desperate Call to the Pan-Galactic Child Abuse Hotline

By Glenn Campbell
Family Court Philosopher

Earth is a nightmare planet, and I wouldn't recommend staying here if you have someplace else to go. Of the many billions of souls residing here, most are tortured and wasted by their society, with only the tiniest percentage achieving something close to self-realization. The social systems are brutal here and grossly under-funded. They take young children with great potential and turn them into desperate, neurotic adults. With its population rapidly outstripping its resources, Earth is a misery factory that is greatly in need of galactic intervention.

I would like to see a pan-galactic welfare agency step in. First, they need to put the whole planet in receivership. Then they can file an emergency injunction to PUT AN IMMEDIATE FREEZE ON ALL NEW CONCEPTIONS. Until this planet can work out its problems, it should not be allowed to recruit any new souls.

I'm not saying that sex should be outlawed. The humans regard it as a bonding behavior (or an acquisition behavior to some), and they seem to get a thrill from it, so why not let it go on? The important thing is that sperm should not be allowed to join with egg until we have this whole operation on a more solid footing. I'm sure the boys in R&D can come up with a solution.

I'm not in favor of micro-management. I don't think that any outside agency should be telling the humans how to live their lives, but somebody has to intervene in the most glaring brutality: the unregulated birth system. The conception freeze would be a logical first step and would send a strong message to the humans. Then it would be up to them to decide how to deal with this dilemma.

The Earthlings are going to be livid, for sure! What RIGHT does any outsider have to limit their procreation? The humans will fire up their petty weaponry and issue ultimatums, but the outside agency won't budge, so ultimately the humans are going to have to negotiate. They have to understand: Procreation is a privilege, not a right, and there has to be a system in place to prevent its misuse.

It is insane, for example, to give procreation rights to drug abusers or those who are already too poor to feed themselves. Teenagers don't need babies, and babies should not be granted to people who are merely lost and don't know what to do with their lives. Ultimately, there has to be a permitting system, similar to the one they have for licensing drivers. Before the government allows you to engage in such a dangerous activity, you have to know the basic rules of the road.

It is not the role of the welfare agency to decide what those standards should be. Once a nation has expended its ammunition and its aging population starts to become a burden, it will come forward with its own proposal for rationalizing the birth system.

The Europeans will have little difficulty in this regard, as their birthrate is already relatively low and they seem to take pretty good care of their citizens, at least by human standards. The Americans, no doubt, will introduce some slimy capitalist licensing system, where only the rich get to have babies and they can trade their procreation rights amongst themselves in an open market. That's the Americans for you, and if this is what works for them, then so be it.

Certain Third World countries won't get their act together enough to even offer a proposal. In those cases, the procreation freeze will remain in effect until the local chaos is brought under control—by sheer attrition if nothing else. Other countries will be allowed certain limited procreation rights based on the strength of their proposals, with the birth rate never being allowed to exceed the death rate.

This is going to be brutal and unpleasant, as external control systems always are. The Earthlings don't want outsiders meddling in their affairs, but what is the alternative? They obviously don't have the discipline to regulate themselves. If left unchecked, six billion people will turn into twelve or twenty billion. The planet's resources will be stripped bear, and global warming will eventually cut food production. Then you'll have a truly catastrophic die-off, which no one in the universe wants to see.

The intervention must be limited. There will be an explicit case plan, and the humans will be expected to work it. If the planet completes its case plan, then full procreation rights will be restored to local authorities and the agency will get back into its spaceship and depart.

If the humans can't get their act together, then the restrictions will remain in effect: no babies, period. Effectively, it's a TPR (Termination of Parental Rights) for the entire planet until the population level becomes supportable again.

It is a shame when things have to come to this, but there is only so much abuse and neglect that one species can be allowed to afflict upon its members. Humanity obviously has a big impulse-control problem, and at some point a higher authority has to step in. When this happens, it is awkward for the agency and humiliating for the population, but what else can you do?

—G.C.




Reader Comments

“Not your best effort” — 12/18/06 (rating=0)

“C'mon, now!? How 'bout MEANINGFUL education instead of social indoctrination or treatment as cattle?” —tularetrump@hotmail.com 12/21/06 (rating=0) ... Response from Webmaster: An off-world agency can't get involved in this sort of intrusion or it will never be able to close the case. The agency's discretion would consist of only a single action: halting procreation until the humans themselves come up with a plan to manage it. Do you really want an alien race dictating your curriculum or telling you how to live your life on Earth?

“I want to make a copy of this and hand it out to all the welfare offices, assuming their clients can read. I use to work for the Department of Children and Families when I was in my mid twenties. I didn't have a clue about the system. I sure have grown up since then and have had my eyes opened.” — 8/18/10 (rating=4)

Ratings so far: 4 0 0 5 4 (Average=2.6)

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