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Brendan O’Neill debating over-population in the New York Times

In his "Dot Earth" blog for the New York Times, journalist Andrew Revkin yesterday wrote about his recent correspondence with spiked editor Brendan O'Neill on the issue of over-population. It's brief, but a great read nonetheless. The post is called "Deconstructing a bestiary of Malthusian 'miserabilists'", and Revkin quotes O'Neill as saying:

An NGO that arrives in poor Africa with a case of condoms AND a mission to save the world from carbon-producing babies is not a disinterested, dispassionate facilitator of choice. The international problematization of large families and the celebration of carbon reduction impacts heavily, I think, on the way women conceive of themselves and their room to make meaningful decisions.

Unfortunately, the politics of reproductive choice is increasingly bound up with the Malthusian agenda. This is a great tragedy, in my view, because it pollutes the arena of choice by importing Western ideals – such as eco-stability and carbon reduction – into Third World women’s decision-making. If NGOs want to provide women in Africa with contraceptive devices, that’s fine – but then go straight home please…  

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