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COMMENT PLEASE: Are The Duggars An Environmental Nightmare?

Environment  (tags: USA, 19 kids, environmental impact, the environment, overcrowded planet, food, food crisis, carbon footprints, recycling, driving a high-mileage car, or using energy-efficient appliances, energy efficient light bulbs, disappearance of the Maldives )

- 3454 days ago -
What the arrival of the TLC reality-show family's 19th child could mean for an overcrowded planet - research says having lots of kids may have a much bigger impact on the environment than previously thought...please give your thoughts!


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Simone D (1462)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 2:33 pm
Thank you Peace.

Cher C (1426)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 2:34 pm

Thnx Kat hun!!!


Kathleen Hilliker (293)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 2:34 pm
I find this to be a GREAT conversation starter article!

Is it true that more kids are bad for the environment? What do you think about their religion teaching you to OVER-procreate? Do you believe in this large of family as responsible? Do bigger families REALLY cause larger rodents? Are they leaving a negative impact on their fellow citizens? Is living larger living more simply?

Let's talk about what it's like to already live in an over-crowded world.....Thanks!

Rhonda Maness (580)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 3:15 pm
Thank You,Peace

Sally Ann G (256)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 3:17 pm
I don't mind how many children families have providing they are wanted, loved and can be provided for. However I have to admit to being sick to death of the reality shows which exploit the children from these families probably just to earn money to in fact care for them. Obviously I don't watch theirs, never heard of them till this, and had never heard of seen the other lot, kate and jon is it until they were suddenly going through a break up. Long live PBS

Fiona O (562)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 3:19 pm
Thank you, Kat, over population causes all of our major environmental woes. More humans means a larger carbon footprint, of course, but human interference with complex ecosystems is another product of having too many people.

RosemaryRannes R (643)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 3:24 pm
Kat thank you for this provocative news story... needless to say i am not going to be judgemental ... only to offer this ... we each need to take responsibility for our 'carbon / ecological footprint' ... these 19X however many footprints now and in the future that the Duggars leave behind will 'factor into' the overall ratio regarding climate change in the future.
WHEW!!!!! this excerpt from the news text supports my thoughts i believe:

Americans and other citizens of developed countries are a particularly big drain on the planet's resources. A 2007 study by Washington State University researcher Eugene A. Rosa found that the principal factors affecting climate change are growth of human population and consumption. And, "The effect is much higher in developed nations than in under-developed nations," Rosa says. "For instance, the ecological footprint of the U.S. is about 20 times that of a country like Bangladesh."

p.s. recycling clothing to the Diabetes Foundation,Women's shelters, Salvation Army or to Goodwill stores is something we should all be doing irregardless of the size of our family... i.e. consider the needs of others

p.p.s. my husband is the second oldest of 12 sibblings in his family ... with 27 grandchildren and i don't know how many great grandchildren... back in those days contraception was not readily available or considered to be needed.
The Kennedy family, Irish Catholic in background as we all are aware, have left and are leaving and will leave their carbon imprints impressed upon our hearts and minds forever ... did they recycle? ... you tell me !


Hussain Jack Marvin (30)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 3:33 pm
I believe-
that we don't have to change friends
if we understand that friends change.

I believe-
that no matter how good a friend is,
they're going to hurt you every
once in a while and you must forgive
them for that.

I believe-
that true friendship continues to grow,
even over the longest distance.
Same goes for true love.

I believe-
that you can do something in an instant
that will give you heartache for life.

I believe-
that it's taking me a long time
to become the person I want to be.

I believe-
that you should always leave loved ones
with loving words. It may be the last
time you see them.

I believe-
that you can keep going
long after you can't.

I believe-
that we are responsible for what we do,
no matter how we feel.

I believe-
that either you control your attitude
or it controls you.

I believe-
that regardless of how hot and
steamy a relationship is at first,
the passion fades and there had
better be something else to take
its place.

I believe-
that heroes are the people
who do what has to be done
when it needs to be done,
regardless of the consequences.

I believe-
that money is a lousy way of keeping score.

I believe-
that my best friend and I can do anything
or nothing and have the best time.

I believe-
that sometimes the people you expect
to kick you when you're down,
will be the ones to help you get back up.

I believe-
that sometimes when I'm angry
I have the right to be angry,
but that doesn't give me
the right to be cruel.

I believe-
that just because someone doesn't love
you the way you want them to doesn't
mean they don't love you with all they have.

I believe-
that maturity has more to do with
what types of experiences you've had
and what you've learned from them
and less to do with how many
birthdays you've celebrated.

I believe-
that it isn't always enough to be
forgiven by others. Sometimes you
have to learn to forgive yourself.

I believe-
that no matter how bad your heart is broken
the world doesn't stop for your grief.

I believe-
that our background and circumstances
may have influenced who we are,
but we are responsible for who we become.

I believe-
that just because two people argue,
it doesn't mean they don't love each other
And just because they don't argue,
it doesn't mean they do.

I believe-
that you shouldn't be so eager to find out a
secret. It could change your life forever.

I believe-
that two people can look at the exact
same thing and see something totally.

I believe-
that your life can be changed in a matter of
hours by people who don't even know you.

I believe-
that even when you think you have no more
to give, when a friend cries out to you
you will find the strength to help.

I believe-
that credentials on the wall
do not make you a decent human being.

I believe-
that the people you care about most in life
are taken from you too soon.


Elm Morrison (357)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 3:34 pm
My two cents' worth: Since Catholism absolutely forbids any artificial birth control - and reluctantly approves the 'rhythm' method only - methinks to target this family is wrong. No, they are not Catholics, but they practise what they preach. The rhythm method is notoriously unreliable - so I would like to ask the Pope; 'How do you account for the world's Catholic population (excluding South America and Mexico) not having children by the dozens? Is it because they do 'more' than practise the rhythm method?

And since all world leaders with savvy are preaching 'reduce your carbon footprint' (once again with the exception of South America and Mexico) how can the Pope still adhere to a policy whose end result is surely the total exhaustion of our natural resources?

I'm not even going to talk about China and India - the most over populated countries ever! China and India should stop all re-production for at least one generation. At least China now has a 'one' child policy - but India? I've spent some months in India, and the poverty, the slums, the diseases remain imprinted on one's mind long after leavng the country.

This story is a media feeding frenzy - if the media had guts (which they don't) then they would go all out and push for a Papal review and a new Papal bull that allows artificial birth control. Since the act of coitus is one that humans will always indulge in, hopefull in a loving relationship, to induce guilt for this very human behaviour in their flock to me is a sin. Make a human being feel guilty just for being human and you've got a slave for life, resulting in a cheat for life - because to act against the very nature endowed by our creator is to tear our souls in half.

The Pople has been very silent on this issue - wonder where the Vatican will get its revenue from when the wold is a desolate wasteland because of overpopulation - earth has only so much to give, and I think the bank account is just about empty......

Now I will probably be banned from Care2. But these are very, very valid points - something for Catholic environmental activists to think about.

The world is damn quiet about this - but has the gall to target this family! What utter hypocracy!

Larry Sheehy (38)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 3:36 pm
Hi Kat...Thanks for sharing this. I heard something about it on radio news last night...couldn't believe what I heard. Amazing disregard for the planet, for what we know (or should know) about how serious the environmental crisis of the planet is! So to answer your questions...

* Is it true that more kids are bad for the environment?

Absolutely, imho!

* What do you think about their religion teaching you to OVER-procreate?

Highly irresponsible! Fortunately there is a christian environmental movement to counter this irresponsible aspect of "religion." For those interested, check out "Creation Care" magazine.

* Do you believe in this large of family as responsible?

NO! No one needs more than 2 kids, imho! The responsible thing is to adopt kids who desperately need a loving and nurturing home. Good for the kids, Good for the planet!

* Do bigger families REALLY cause larger rodents?

No comment.

* Are they leaving a negative impact on their fellow citizens?

Absolutely! Yes! YES! Their kids aren't, but they, the parents are. It's not the individual kids born into that family who are the problem. AND, how in the world can two parents, no matter how loving they think they are, provide the kind of love and care that each child needs, when there are 14-16 too many kids to provide it to! Again, imho!

* Is living larger living more simply?

How can a family that large not consume way too many resources. Simple living requires a REDUCTION in resource use, not an un-neccessary increase in use.

There is an excellent organization that more people should take heed of their message...called Population Connection (formerly Zero Population growth):

"Since 1968, Population Connection (formerly Zero Population Growth) has been educating young people with its award-winning Population Education program and advocating for progressive action to stabilize world population at a level that can be sustained by Earth's resources."

Peace, Larry

Kathleen Hilliker (293)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 3:42 pm
I agree with you, Rosemary. We all have to take on some responsibility if we are going to leave even the tiniest bit of a healthy future for our children/grandchildren/great grandchildren. And I think this article made me think a little harder about being the oldest of 6 children. I'm sure my parents never thought about the future or even how they were going to put a dinner on the table....we just did it. But to be a responsible person nowadays, we almost need to go back to some of those roots (recycling, composting, using less water, planting our own garden, using less lighting, etc.) that our ancestors did.

I'm not quite sure a 19-kid family is the best example of being responsible, but I grew up with a family of 16 across the street from my grandmother. I'm not sure how people can nowadays even manage that many children! I've seen their (Duggar's) home on tv, and it's a mini-mansion that they built themselves. At least they've thought it out, and DO live very simple lives. I think even smaller families could learn some environmental and conservation ideas from the family.

The real kicker in this article for me was that no matter what other means you take to conserve, just one child less matters more than anything else you can conserve on. I had never thought of that before! I just hope people think carefully & responsibly before they decide to have a baby.

Kathleen Hilliker (293)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 4:04 pm
Hi Eureka!
I do wonder how the Pope feels about the uncontrolled amount of children born without any birth control, but he must stick strictly to Catholic doctrine and will always feel that way. What I am amazed with is places like China & India who aren't not influenced by the Catholic faith. Will these huge amounts continue to grow until the world, or will cruel people limit one child per family as the Chinese do?

That's why the article is worthy of a discussion.....there are so many angles to address just what is best for our environment....and this is, to me, a question not just of religion ...but of science & our future, too.

Mandi T (366)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 4:08 pm
Tks Kat, I'm going to keep quiet on this one LOL.

MmAway M (519)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 4:12 pm

I am at a total lose for words on this one.

Took a look at the site, before I got shut off this lap top, but still a wee bit confused..

Frankly, I think in todays world, people should have no more children than they are able to PAY for not the government, not deductions etc. Don't get like the Reality Shows and make $$$$ on kids...

Totally wrong..

Maybe Kat I truly missed this one, and would welcome you to set me straight.

Interesting read...not happy about all of these people having soooooo many kids to get fame.

Elm Morrison (357)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 4:27 pm
I've just had a pm where it is implied (if I read it correctly) that the 'one child' policy in China is cruel. There are many 'mother earths' on this planet - these are the women who simply adore children, can bear them by the score and twenty, and still smile at the end of the day. Who is to say what emotional hardship a policy of 'one child' only places upon these women? I can't answer that. However, China is hugely over-populated, and unless this growth is checked/planned China will end up looking for more 'Lebens Raum' sorry can't remember the exact German translation. China is huge, but much of China is simply not fit for human habitation.

America is outright guilty of leaving one of the biggest, if not the biggest carbon footprint in the world. But I don't think targeting a woman with 19 children is the way to reduce the American carbon footprint. Look at who is actually guilty here. Americans (at least when I was last in the USA) drive HUGE gas guzzling cars - everything is over the top, even the size of servings at take-a-ways. When one looks at the infrastructure required to maintain this gas guzzling over the top souls - then the problem has a bit more perspective.

Let’s say I had 19 kids, but I lived off the land, (my own large veggie patch) and that I drove a fuel efficient car, that I did not support fast food outlets, that I did not smoke, that I had a fuel efficient house (i.e. solar heating) etc. I would guarantee you that I (with my 19 kids and husband) would be a hell of a lot more eco friendly than a family of ONE kid, who drove a huge SUV (for prestige) and had every electrical appliance under the sun, and if this family of one were non-vegans then their carbon footprint would be MASSIVE as compared to my LITTLE vegan eco-friendly family -19 kids and all…

When one looks at a problem, one can never look at it in isolation - it has to be looked at in context. It is so easy to get emotional over a Media Headline - mobs react to headlines without putting the whole issue into true perspective.

I agree, India and China are not Catholics. The one believes in a multitude of deities, the other doesn’t believe in any deities, at least on the surface. Both of their governments carry full responsibility for the over-population and poverty, just as Catholism carries full responsibility for the over-population and poverty of South American States and Mexico.

Let me hasten to add, I only have two kids! I would not have the stamina to raise 19 little tykes and I need my beauty sleep! And I’m vegan (so my carbon footprint was and is kept as small as possible) – and I think the sensationalism about monster rats ‘hooked’ into this story is a sorry example of very, very crappy journalism.

Carrie B (306)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 4:31 pm
Thank you, Peace!One of the saddest aspects of this show is that we are promoting the antiquated belief that women are made for nothing besides reprodction and motherhood! How many of those children have received rearing by other siblings rather than their parents? Those children are quite obviously loved, but also quite obviously illequipted for the real world. I feel sorry for the entire family because they have no real life skills. The mother of the family appears as a shallow, sad "little woman" who's ONLY joy in life is the knowledge that her reproductive system is still functioning! Menopause is going to hit that woman like a ton of bricks!

Joycey B (750)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 4:56 pm
Noted with thanks Peace.

Evelyn Z (300)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 5:45 pm
H-M-M-M-M = W-E-L-L =
G-d did say = "be fruitful & multiply" = I wish he had only been referring to rabbits though!!!!!!

. (0)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 6:07 pm
No species was supposed to be so dominant as human beings..if we are going to live in harmony with the earth,then we have to cut down our numbers...some economially developed countries more than other countries..cut down the space we take up...and cut down human polluting activity.
Also there are many children who desperately need love and a good family (I use the word family to mean any and all types by the way)..why not foster ?If I was with the right woman,i'd definitely consider adopting .
As for being fruitful..yep..i'm up for some fruit..thankfully in the modern age,we can choose to seperate sex and pregnancy..up yours to the hippocritical Roman Catholic hierarchy..this is the post enlightenment world and I wish these Priests,Popes and twisted fundamentalists didn't keep trying to peg us back to a second dark age of destroying reason..and nope I ain't anti-religion,just anti-fundamentalist..

Nancy L (141)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 6:20 pm
I think it is none of my business or anyone else's how many children these people have.

Past Member (0)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 6:21 pm
For myself personally, I would feel iresponsible making their choice to have 19 kids. Not just because of the carbon footprint aspect, but how to possibly give each child the love, nuturing and guidence that they would need would be a challenge. BUT...that is how I feel for me. I can't judge another for their choice because I don't walk in their shoes, understand their journey here nor do I have their spiritual beliefs. The fact that they are turning this into a TV show though is just wrong on all levels.

MsR S (189)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 6:53 pm
I'll be semi-quiet, don't want to be kicked out of care 2. I'll say I've seen some rodents w/ more brains, more caring
for the future & the resources we must share. Maybe this famous flu that's coming will knock off enough people to make room for this...hum... brood & their spawn.

Cynthia Davis (340)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 8:34 pm
If I had that many kids I would not have hair on my head and it would hurt from banging it on the wall.

Bette M (91)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 9:15 pm
The Duggars are a happily over populated picture of cloning.!
Mere reproduction of self..........And, extremely selfish in the long run.

These parents have the means & the will power to care well for their
children. However, anyone thinking they can do the same without
the will or the education & money is asking for a tragedy to happen.

Think hard about Octomom & all her self centered reasons for
having fourteen kids under the age of seven..........The ultimate
form of greed & self centeredness!!!!!!!!

Seems to me children/babies have become a commercialized
means of making/getting money with noteriety rubbed in.

I personally am a very strong advocate of the fewer the better
and the more you can give to each child.

And.......I do fret about over population. Mother Earth now
holds 6.8 billion people with more than half starving or
starving to death.

Also, there are millions of babies/children who are up for
adoption all over the world........Who is going to care and
love them as the Duggars do their own.

Perhaps when man remove his mirror of self love
he then will see the world for what it really is.

Plant trees for life........................

Amy Raybourn (8)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 9:56 pm
Well, Kat, I feel that the Duggars are just plain demented. There is a limit to everything. Even in religion.
What they do will come back on them and us. It is not a necessary thing to be so into pregnancy, for the attention that centers around you and the upcoming human, that you put your other children at a disadvantage. It takes a village to raise a child, not a total of your older siblings to be their guides. I bet none of their older daughters want the life they have grown up in. If they do, I bet they want it limited.

Oh, and if they aren't Catholic, and I believe they are not, what religion beckons them to be so negligent in the protection of our Mother Earth?

I agree that a child is a blessing and a gift. But why should I have to help support someone else's children? My tax dollars should be spent on needy things, not preferential overcrowding of my domain on this planet by people who do not know the meaning of self control and abstinance. Is this what they consider a good example for their children and ours?

Carol W (119)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 10:13 pm
I'm glad we still live with some freedom's.

On my block in the '50s; my neighbor had 22 children and is the happiest, & healthiest, sr. citizen I know.

(o: A non-story like this did not get any ones interest in those years. these kids will grow up thinking about others, having patience possibly generosity, and practiced at communication.

Smaller countries like Lebanon, and Mexico still have large families of 6 to 12 children.

I guess to sum it up for me; I have 'no' comment on private family matters and the sickest, saddest part of all of this is that this some how became a story.

Carol W (119)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 10:14 pm
oh I see..

This is TV entertainment.

greenplanet e (155)
Thursday September 3, 2009, 10:58 pm
I think it's a tad selfish, irresponsible, and a burden on the planet to have so many kids -- especially if they are living a "U.S." lifestyle of consumption and waste. We kinda need to think globally, beyond just what we as individuals want or think we're entitled to -- especially in the individualistic, consuming West.

"Americans and other citizens of developed countries are a particularly big drain on the planet's resources. A 2007 study by Washington State University researcher Eugene A. Rosa found that the principal factors affecting climate change are growth of human population and consumption. And, "The effect is much higher in developed nations than in under-developed nations," Rosa says. "For instance, the ecological footprint of the U.S. is about 20 times that of a country like Bangladesh." "


Kathleen Hilliker (293)
Friday September 4, 2009, 12:26 am
Carol W. ...I just wanted to say that this is NOT just tv entertainment. This is real lives, real people, and a real article about whether or not huge families with lots of children have a negative impact...a carbon imprint....on our Earth.

It doesn't have anything to do with entertainment (unless conceiving is!), or how long anyone lives, or having them here or in any other country is wrong. It's a question about overpopulating the world, I least that's my basic take on the news. I, myself, feel that families need to act responsibly and respect themselves AND the world in which they live.

Thanks for your comments, though.

P.S. Great comment, Koo J.!

Cheree M (46)
Friday September 4, 2009, 1:48 am
Noted. Thanks Kat. Great Topic.

Past Member (0)
Friday September 4, 2009, 1:54 am
I'd like to know how they support themselves ! For myself, I had enough trouble just trying to bring 2 kids up right, feed them, clothe them and educate them, and I worked 2 jobs to do it - so HOW DO THEY DO IT ? Reminds me of the film - IDIOCRACY . Anyone seen it - if not, do so as I really agreed with what it was about as can see it happening around me all the time, and think this family is a gross example of it.

Elm Morrison (357)
Friday September 4, 2009, 3:34 am
Heavens, I've just read the comment about other people being knocked off by this flu virus to make room for this brood.... Not nice at all

Don’t you think it is strange how many personal attacks have now been heaped upon this family? They follow their belief system and if a TV show helps them to make ends meet, so what? That just makes them sensible - at least they don't pretend to be something which they are not.

The gazillions of Catholics who do practise artificial contraception are not following their beliefs - so they don't have a gazillion kids. People in glass houses should not throw stones!

If anything good is to come from this story I would like to see this: A MASSIVE groundswell of petitions to their local bishops to call for a Papal Bull authorising artificial contraception. And also a good look at the belief systems inherent on both sides of the Bible - old and New Testament. Christ taught forgiveness, the Old Testament clearly teaches 'an eye for an eye'. And it is the Old Testament that instructs 'go forth and multiply'. Here again the organisers of organised religion use the Bible to further whatever agenda they have - and families are crushed beneath their incompetent heels.

This family is practising their religion down to the last letter. How many of us are not doing it, because logic says 'Something is not making sense'. ?

If we must gun for somebody here - then gun for the organisers of organised religion. We all hold to our own belief system, whether we actually practise it properly or not is another story.

I am ashamed of al the hateful remarks here - vented and aimed at this woman. Aim it where it can make a difference - at organisers of organised religion! Energy travels, our love travels to those in need, likewise hateful comments. Can you imagine the spiritual harm you are attempting to send to this family?

For Shame!

June Rice (125)
Friday September 4, 2009, 3:53 am
What ever happened to the zero population movement? Do we really need more polluting vehicles, more habitat-destroying tracts of housing, more malnourished children, more weapons of mass destruction? Can we not see that the earth's resources are finite, that there must inevitably be an end to growth sooner or later? Should we not rein in our gluttonous, consumptive ways before a halt is forced upon us under circumstances beyond our power to control or rectify? Are we so blinded by the smog-filled haze and garbage filled waters that we cannot see continued unrestrained growth threatens the very environment that sustains us? Or is it too late?

The once common red knot, a bird which migrates from pole to pole twice a year, becomes a rare site on the beaches of Delaware Bay as increased catches of horseshoe crabs to use as bait has denied the birds their food supply, pitting wildlife preservationists against fishermen once again as the world's ever more numerous two-legged fish-eaters demand to be fed.

While obesity becomes a distinguishing feature of the American national character, 30-40,000 people, primarily children, starve to death every day and another billion go to bed hungry.


Bette M (91)
Friday September 4, 2009, 4:47 am
Thank you Eureka......Very well thought out & written.

If anything good is to come from this story I would like to see this: A MASSIVE groundswell of petitions to their local bishops to call for a Papal Bull authorising artificial contraception. And also a good look at the belief systems inherent on both sides of the Bible - old and New Testament. Christ taught forgiveness, the Old Testament clearly teaches 'an eye for an eye'. And it is the Old Testament that instructs 'go forth and multiply'. Here again the organisers of organised religion use the Bible to further whatever agenda they have - and families are crushed beneath their incompetent heels.

And......I have two children who are eighteen & half apart. And, I'm the oldest of eleven. And, it was no picknick growing up with nothing!!!!!!!!!!

So much for reproducing ones-self for what? Even the animals of the world can not reproduce as we do & have!(6.8 billion of us & counting!)..........And, at one time animals could reproduce on a very large scale but man came along & wiped out their habitats.

Please plant trees for life................................


patricia lasek (317)
Friday September 4, 2009, 6:00 am
In the days when we were an agrarian society, people had more children because mortality rates were high and they needed the children to help them work the land. Now, there is no need for that! Myself, I cannot imagine why anyone would want that many children. In this day and age, with all that is facing our planet, why would anyone want to have so many children? What will their lives be like when they are grown?

chris b (2474)
Friday September 4, 2009, 8:32 am
Oh religion, children, contraception! Well if you read my post on rising child preganceis and STDs you will be aware of my views on sex education! The strange rytham method of "contraception" sanctioned by Catholicism has always eluded my understanding a becuase it is not reliable and b because it is never the less a form of contraception albeit like putting blank cartridges in a pistol although perhaps that anology is in reverse and might be better put by say planting seeds in infertile soil. Being somewhat cynical and of a sarcastic frame of mind I tend to think of religious doctrine as a medieval attempt by the Church to out populate the heathen hoards by out bonking them. However I must try and be serious in the face of blatant and enormous stupidity. A commentator on some programme asked the question why is there such a problem with roads ,housing etc in the UK ? Of course this could be applied to any country. To me the answer is patently obvious there are too many people in the UK and before some smart arse pipes up and blames immigration that is not what I am on about. Firstly the NHS spends a fortune of fertility treatment which to me is a bit like the Chinese chopping off tiger penises to get it on or what ever they do with them! An unneccessary burden on an organisation that has huge financial problems and could better spend that cost elsewhere. Religion would tell us if someone is infertile then God made it so. Perversely I suppose the Church would argue they should not have sex because they know they are not going to produce children but I digress. Too many people means too many cars which means too many clogged roads and too many people want the few houses that are available. Thus you get supply and demand jumping into the equation and prices soaring for housing and the speculaters bankers and all the organs of goverment stir the whole mess into a nightmare scenario from some Hollywood mutant director! Added to that people in the UK are very naughty they are living longer despite stuffing themselves with McDonalds and similar exports from the US! Go forth be fruitfull and multiply sounds to me like something from Gordon Brown's speech on the economy or his father's sermon at his Kirk. Clearly the difficulty of the Church is the theology is 6000, 2000,1600 years old or whatever age your religion is! Therefore such epithets as Marraige is a remedy aganst fornication really is irrelevant in todays overcrowed multicultural, multi sexed society, overlaid (excuse the pun!) with deseases of the STD kind such a AIDS etc and you have a recipe for global meltdown by a combination of desease and too many offspring. In the UK making babies is a passport to numerous benefits and there have been tv documentaries highlighting the unemployed (well that's an oxxymoron!) man with three "wives" and 20 odd kids living in a number of council houses knocked to gether with the fleet of 4x4s in the paved front garden that serves as a car park! To my personal knowledge having worked in the exam factory business for over 27 years I saw young mothers (school children) leave school at 16 to get a council flat with the father of the child only to return their various offspring back through the system for a repeat performance. I might add that none of these were Catholics! So far from emulating the Duggars, society should be facilitating the reduction of family sizes and not forcing mother hood on children with stereotypical models such as motherhood based toys like dolls prams and kitchen equipment reinforcing the subservient male dominated little woman syndrome. The less than subtle hints from female family members like mother in laws and grandmothers who want to go through the whole childbearing scenario again by proxy with their daughters, daughter in laws etc Society may have moved on some respects but religion condemns women often to a life of male servitude and as some neanderthal (and that is probably an insult to the neanderthals!)wit once described a housewife as something you screw on the bed that does the house work! Until we move away from that concept of woman we will be stuck with an ever burgeoning population, Church or no Church Starvation and war will probably follow and the whole sorrow fiasco will doubtless be repeated ad infinitum as we rarely learn from history. As automation has replaced the need for manual labour it is high time government adopted the policy I was advocating as a college lecturer in the 70s which was forget the work ethic, educate people for leisure, pay them an existable allowance with bonuses for usefull voluntary work such as running youth groups, animal shelters, coaching sports and charity work etc This would give a large section of the population the ability to contribute useful service to the community rather than at present only doing it in a small way as a punishment because idle hands have become criminal. Alround benefit to the community but far too simple for the Church or Politicians to grasp there being so bound up with rules regulations and the fictitous work ethic etc! Sadly much of the overpopulation arises from ignorance and could perhaps be illustrated by another story of the person who complained of getting pregnant after reading the insructions on the condon packet which said stretch it over the organ and when asked whether they did that answered no we did not have an organ so we stretched it over the keyboard! Well that brings it up to date it was a piano in the original version!

Caree C (250)
Friday September 4, 2009, 10:48 am
A short animated film (The Stork) to consider with their 19 ,,, and counting:

Friday September 4, 2009, 11:27 am
first I am amazed this womans uterus has held and delivered this many kids. They seem very authentic in there beleifs, I really dont watch these type of shows but have seen them a few times, and wow are they good kids. as far as being bad for the earth i really can not say. if they can and do have all these kids i guess its the will of God or what ever one beleives, I do know she got preggers the first time while on the pill, the entire family was on a show and she talked about it, they prayed over it. Then threw out the birth control and let nature take its course. I can not shun them as they are good parents and take good care of the kids. but i do agree they are going to be like unfixed cats if it doesnt stop. i had a family near us when i was a kid in ny. the had 21 kids, not sure if adopted or all theres or even fostered but they bought 2 houses side by side and raised those reality tv back then and all its perks.....

Caree C (250)
Friday September 4, 2009, 11:41 am
In the news I posted Tuesday regarding their 19th child; I said that being frutiful and multiplying doesn't apply anymore. I believe we have the biggest impact on the planet with our increasing numbers. I also believe we are supposed to be the loving caretakers of our world. We should be responsible and be mindful. The future health of earth and for all of its inhabitants depends on it. I found the quotes/information listed below regarding the Biblical take on populating the planet interesting:


God is often quoted as telling us to "be fruitful and multiply, and replenish the Earth and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth." Genesis 1:28

When we are told to "replenish the Earth," the first people had only just been created, so "replenish" probably refers to other life forms. God is instructing us to reforest, re-establish wildlife habitat, enable wildlife to flourish, and replenish Earth with His blessed creatures.

Having "dominion" includes the responsibility to preserve and care for "every living thing which moveth on the Earth." Bringing about a creature's extinction most certainly violates this divine directive.

Humans are not the only creatures blessed by God. In Genesis 1:22, God blesses the other lives He has created and instructs them also to "be fruitful and multiply."

We can't assume that instructions given before our fall from grace and banishment from the Garden of Eden apply afterward. In Genesis 3:16, God told Eve, "I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children . . ."

For Christians, this curse has been lifted by Jesus' sacrifice on the cross, and no longer applies. Now, where contraception is available, we needn't bring forth children in sorrow.

There are limits to our fruitful multiplying:

"Woe unto them that join house to house, that lay field to field, 'til there be no place, that they may be placed alone in the midst of the Earth!" Isaiah 5:8

We seem to be exceeding God's admonishment.

God also advises us to care for the children who already exist instead of giving birth to more:

"Sing, O barren, thou that didst not bear; break forth in singing, and cry aloud, thou that didst not travail with child: for more are the children of the desolate than the children of the married wife, saith the Lord." Isaiah 54:1

Bette M (91)
Friday September 4, 2009, 11:49 am
Caree C.................Amen & damned good comments!!!!!!!

Sent you astar!!!!!!

Plant trees for life..........................

Cynthia Davis (340)
Friday September 4, 2009, 12:54 pm
Sending a Green Star is a simple way to say "Thank you"
You cannot currently send a star to chris because you have done so within the last week.

Candi Ausman (69)
Friday September 4, 2009, 2:45 pm
Spay/neuter.........for us! We're the most overpopulated species on the planet, causing underpopulation of other species.

I managed to get through my life without procreating, thank goodness!

Elm Morrison (357)
Friday September 4, 2009, 3:56 pm

Chris B. and Caree C: Excellent comments - both from a socio-political perspective and an interpretive commentary on Bible verses.

At the end of the day - common sense should prevail, and no political, social, or religious hocus-pocus should be the guiding force of our life decisions. But we are a superstitious lot.....

Must say, I've enjoyed the sensible debating on this news thread - makes a change from those who are just 'noted'...... or populated with non-sensical vitriolic statements only.

I now depart the stage, to close the doors upon this play of woes: 'To Breed Or Not To Breed'

...... Curtain draw, Sound of footsteps, Sound of closing door .......


Tierney G (381)
Friday September 4, 2009, 4:08 pm
I have heard that this religion Quiverful, that the Duggars are a part of is into procreating like this in the hopes of taking over the government. This is no joke, they believe if they have enough children and raise them with the Quiverful ideals which is actually Led by an extreme patriarchal leader that this will be the redemption of the world. Sounds Talibanish to me. Scary very scary.
Thanks Peace

Kathleen Hilliker (293)
Friday September 4, 2009, 4:10 pm
Again, I actually knew this would be a good article to discuss and bring a little more depth to the whole "CARBON FOOTPRINT" subject of the article. I understand there are religious feelings in the jest of this article, but it's also about what is also a RESPONSIBLE way to lessen that imprint responsibly. THAT is what the article is about...

I guess, I still don't understand why a solid family unit like the Duggars can ALSO understand the meaning of adoption for the kids who are already on this Earth...who also need loved & cared for without adding another 20 of their own.

P.S. I'm Catholic...with one child. And yes, I don't think I'm breaking any religious laws by practising abstinence....& intelligence!

Now, back to the environmental aspect of this article....whether you personally know this show/family or not. You could also get into people like OctoMom and HER impact to her cabon impact if you want to discuss THAT mess!

Kathleen Hilliker (293)
Friday September 4, 2009, 4:14 pm
Sorry about the spelling! I hope you get the "gist" of what I'm saying! I'm thinking I need to start "practicing" my spelling! And as for OctoMom, her "carbon" footprint is already kinda shakey to me! :)

Bette M (91)
Friday September 4, 2009, 4:23 pm
How many want to place bets on she shoots for say 22/23?

Is anyone in Las Vegas listening?

Just a crazy ass thought........Plant trees for life.........

Tierney G (381)
Friday September 4, 2009, 4:48 pm
You are on B M !!! I think she will have as many as she can! I must say though this family looks to be well loved they don't seem to fit the mold of the religious righters. Who knows though. I think it is very irresponsible to bring this many kids into a world that is tetering on the brink of destruction. I think they think that God will take care of the problems so who knows. They do not believe in science they believe in creationism so ther goes the problem.

Rocio C (38)
Friday September 4, 2009, 4:55 pm
Thank you so much my friend. :-)

Bette M (91)
Friday September 4, 2009, 5:35 pm
Tierney......Yes, they have a love & loving strictness that we seldom see in todays society. And that is commendable to say the least.

However, in light of todays world which is such a mess from all & any angle you care to think of these children will be given what is left of the world in a few years.

Had I know how awful the world condition was going to be & become at twenty I'm sure I never would have had children. But I did & do not regrete having them........(Just two eighteen & half years apart).

But, way back then I was so naive & unaware. These Duggars are educated people. I saw the world through rose colored glasses at twenty & I suspect the Duggars still have theirs on & they are much older than when I had my daughter at twenty. Back then I had a false sense of awareness & security & the Duggars have the same thing even in their age.

I'm amazed looking back at how naive I was & more amazed of how naive these good people are.And, they are good although totally ignoring how many children are born who will never learn nor touch a book as their children will.

I worry about what my children will have to face in the years to come.
Do the Duggars even worry at all beyond the realm of their blessings?

Plant trees for life........................

Caree C (250)
Friday September 4, 2009, 11:21 pm
(It is hard for me to even fathom the following), but the Duggars report that they have changed an estimated 90,000 diapers and do approximately 200 loads of laundry a month... According to statistics, just one American child generates as much CO2 as 106 Haitian children.

Jack Spratt (46)
Saturday September 5, 2009, 1:03 am
The Biblical Injunction as a human growth hormone:
of “Be Fruitful & Multiply;” was really Yippie Skippy
Five-Thousand-Years ago but it is now sorta
lunatic fundamental now that we are more than
Five-Trillion but Who’s counting Now? Except @

Bette M (91)
Saturday September 5, 2009, 1:29 am
Caree.......You stated:
According to statistics, just one American child
generates as much CO2 as 106 Haitian children.

Based on what you wrote it is contradictory
that we want the best for our children and at
the same time want the best for Haitian children

If we want the best for these say third world children
then we/the world would quadruple the amount of carbon

So, man has a way of putting his foot in his mouth no
matter what lifestyle we have & the betterment of those
who have nothing in comparison.

Man has apparently created a damned if you do and
a damned if you don't attitude. The U.S. & many
other countrys over time have all jumped on board
to save Africans, Haitian & all others to raise their
standard of living to ours.............For what?

More carbon footprints???

Just a thought.......Plant trees for life......................


chris b (2474)
Saturday September 5, 2009, 3:29 am
American UK Africa or wherever overpopulation for whatever reason is an ecological disaster. Trouble is trap spey and neuter might not get unversal approval as far as humans are concerned. Constant stock replenishment without regard of the exponental growth potential does not require rocket science to forecast a situation of too many mouths to feed and the exponents of obscure religiuios exibitionists participating in the drivel that passes for entertainment on tv do nothing but bring ridicle on their lifestyle choices which presumably would be picked up by the state if they were not rewarded by the media! The notion that God will provide is an abrogation of personal responsibility and such a naive interpratation of the Gospel that it cannot possibly be taken seriuosly. Most will be aware that God has had her telephone disconnected for a long time an has probably abandoned any idea of saving humanity from itself with our collective greed and nastiness. So what these silly Duggars are doing is nothing short of earning money by procreating! Many examples of this behavour come to mind in a non religiuos setting. My overwhelming concern is the stupidity of people could well trigger copy cat families going for the bonkers crown in some sort of bizarre competition for the largest carbon family footprint of all time! Sadly much done in the name of tradition or religion is not good for the planet be it overpopulating, spreading desease, killing animals, abusing animals or the planet!

Phyllis P (232)
Saturday September 5, 2009, 3:15 pm
Don't know what to say.....I don't believe in controlling one's freedom of choice however, I would err on the side of caution and conservation. I just hope these children are loved and well taken care of.

Gregory S (257)
Monday September 7, 2009, 8:07 am
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