The other morning, as dark storm clouds gathered and the wind howled about my humble abode, I was comfortably ensconced at my computer, caffeine in hand, just beginning to ferret out my daily propaganda fix. The first stop? Of course — the UK Guardian.
The Guardian is my first stop for two reasons. Lest I fall victim to a fit of serenity, a stern reminder of “woke” du jour cognition steers me back to reality. Also, as an inveterate anglophile with ancestral roots in the Sceptered Isle, I savor that extra little measure of candor in the British press, which is ever so slightly less PC than its American brethren – except The Guardian.
The Guardian and its sister rag The Observer put The New York Times and The Washington Post to shame in their unabashed advocacy of all things leftish. But when I clicked on The Guardian the other day, up popped the headline: “The world needs babies. So we’d better rethink what we expect from mothers.”
Whoa! “The world needs babies?” In The Guardian? What in the world? I had previously thought — that they thought — that babies were bad for the environment, an anthopogenic bio-weapon that would destroy the planet. I mean, think of the outsized carbon footprint the wee ones would wield were their number to increase! Also, the little ones are known among the smart set as being a roadblock to feminine empowerment, which is a damning indictment of their pernicious habit of deliberately interfering with career advancement. That’s two strikes against the tykes.
Of course, any reasonable person, such as yours truly, expects The Guardian to deliver strike three to the enfants terribles any second. Instead, they’re saying, “The world needs babies.” What gives?
So I read on. The writer is one Sonia Sodha. Ms. Sodha, bless her heart, is about as woke as they come. She is certainly well-credentialed for wokedom, having served as adviser to
Communist Socialist leftist “progressive” Ed Miliband when he was the oh-so-distinguished Labour Party leader.
In an earlier piece in the Guardian, Ms. Sodha described herself as a “half-Hindu half-Sikh Indian.” I’d have loved it if “British” had been somewhere in the mix, but we can’t expect everything. Identity politics has been her thing at The Guardian, and she obviously knows better about what she is than the rest of us.
But back to the babies. Ms. Sodha says:
There are 23 countries whose populations are forecast to halve by 2100. No bad thing for the global carbon footprint perhaps, but it is difficult to overstate the massive economic consequences for ageing societies with falling birth rates, as a shrinking workforce has to shoulder the pension, health and care costs.
Hmm… So, despite the carbon footprint conundrum, the lack of babies is a bigger problem. We’re getting warm here, and she is telling folks that the fertility crisis threatens everyone – even the “woke” among us!
Then she says, “Helping people who want to have children is an absolute no-brainer.” Spot on! Is this still The Guardian? I pinched myself.
Ms. Sodha favors “funding fertility treatment for everyone who wants it” while posing the question: “why should the state be subsidizing the life choices of women who have supposedly put career before babies?”
Another no-brainer! The state, in any non-coercive way possible, should always promote the family. That means promoting having children. And that means making sure there will be enough people around to look after their elders and continue the species. The state should indeed serve the people, something many of the so-called “democracies” of the West have forgotten. Wake up, woke folk — and help me tell these decadent governments to get it right!
Women are no longer forced to assume the identity of mother to the exclusion of all else. But we have also had to confront the big fat lie that women can now have it all: of course we can’t. Parenthood involves sacrifices…
Yep. Refreshing to hear about sacrifice instead of safe spaces. What good things come without sacrifice? This lady may be right out of PC central casting, but she’s stealing my lines!
Don’t tell anybody I said so, but her essay is eminently reasonable, and I’m beginning to actually like what I’m reading in The Guardian. The lamestream media ceaselessly showcases a tsunami of sob stories about the burden of motherhood, while news about the joy of being a mother barely makes the back pages, if at all.
Healthy societies promote family life over individualism. Atomised individuals cannot build a civilisation. Humans cooperate, and there is no more loving and rewarding cooperation than the familial kind. This doesn’t have anything to do with making a buck, but everything to do with a loving, fulfilling life.
Now here’s the money quote:
If we want more people to want more children, we need to think about how to create a culture where it is the norm for all parents of young children — fathers included — to work part-time and share the load more equally; policies such as at least three months of generous use-it-or-lose-it paternity leave can help set these norms.
Sounds to me like a rough-and-ready repudiation of greedy globalism, where people are valued solely for economic utility, and money is the end rather than the means to an end. While Ms. Sodha’s essay is couched in just enough PC-speak to titillate The Guardian crowd, her message about helping families rocks.
Now maybe I’m biased (wink, nod) but I was surprised as all get out to see such common sense in The Guardian. Yes, The Guardian! As the thickheaded commentariat finally discovers the fertility crisis, there will be more writing like this from people left, right and center.
Maybe a global crusade on behalf of Homo sapiens — putting family first and putting the birth dearth out of business — will be the antidote for polarisation, a cultural common cause that finally brings ideological warriors together for humanity.
Sounds good to me.