Being childfree doesn’t mean our time is up for grabs.
People aren’t solely frustrated at vegans nowadays. They’re also offended by the fact that some of us are childfree with no additional duties and responsibilities to take care of in this modern day hellscape of a planet we call a civilization.
I’m both of those things, Vegan and Childfree. Childfree vegans are probably living breathing walking manifestations of what pro-natalist meat eaters do not want their children to ever become. Antinatalist vegans are empowered opinionated individuals who don’t give two hoots about what people think about them. If they did, they would be conformists just like everyone else.
Take this guy, who decided to sue his parents for giving birth to him without his consent, for example:
This Mumbai Man Wants To Sue His Parents For Giving Birth To Him
A 27-year-old from Mumbai is planning to sue his parents for giving birth to him without his consent. Raphael Samuel…
Does it look like he cares about what people think about him?
In fact, he wants them to care but in a different way. He wants ‘childfree’ to become a socially acceptable way of life so that one day it isn’t frowned upon as some unorthodox eccentricity taken up by lost, wayward, individualistic, self-absorbed hippies who have no aspirations in life. Our population trajectory, of course, shows no signs of slowing after crossing the wonderful milestone of 8 billion this year, like its some kind of evolutionary checkpoint.
As per the latest research, not procreating (they only labelled it “have one fewer child” to sound politically correct) is the only decision that comes close enough in making any significant impact on how one can reduce their burden on the environment:
In fact, being childfree has such an immense impact on carbon emissions, it beats the nearest contender for the top spot — living car free — by 24 times! Yes, everything else falls way way lower on the ladder to climate utopia, or at least some resemblance of a planet with a stable climate.
Other popular, but high impact actions that one can take such as subsisting on a plant-based diet and driving a hybrid car come at even lower impact scores of 0.82 and 0.52 respectively, which is again, lower than not having kids by a massive margin.
Being childfree is socially isolating
Being childfree comes with its own social cost. It is a taboo if you will. You are after all, following a path millions of others haven’t dared to for fear of being judged and criticized for it.
Childfree people aren’t feted or appreciated for the contributions they make to the world the way families are. And one of the biggest assumptions people make of childfree people is that they have all the time in the world.
A boss not allowing you leave work on time (but allowing employees with kids to), friends and family members considering you their unofficial babysitter when required, friends constantly trying to hook you up with someone in the hope that you might one day get married and have kids of your own, family members asking you for favours and giving you errands to run, are all not subtle but very direct ways in which the world is a harsh place to be for childless couples and childfree individuals.
Childfree people are bullied into staying back at work, contributing to some kind of social cause or public benefit all the time. After all, what else do we have to do with our lives if we aren’t changing diapers, chasing kids around the house, or ferrying them to school, right?
We still have to contribute though
With that being said, being childfree is no excuse to avoid making a contribution to society in some form or another. We have so much to give back to the communities and societies which have enabled our growth and and who have shaped our personalities into the people that we are today. I do make a generous donation every year to a charity that I personally trust and whose work has yielded results. Due to issues faced in the past believing in the goodness of people, I’m wary of contributing to each and every charity fundraiser arriving at my computer screen in the form of a pop-up ad or social media message.
No one, regardless of their childfree or family life aspirations, should shirk from their very human obligations of making this world a better place than they first found it when they entered the workforce. After all, what goes around comes back around. We’re going to collectively benefit from the contributions made by each and every able-bodied working member of society at some point or another. Sure, there will always be leeches around us whose only aim in life is to abuse common resources. But that mustn’t stop every other good hearted person from making their own selfless contribution to society in some form or kind.
It is imperative that the foundation of such noble pursuits be based on the virtues of selflessness and altruism since one might never access those services across their lives. Thus, contributing to the greater good must be a foundational principle around which a society is built, not superficial activities that people indulge in when they have free time on their hands.
Tree plantation drives, constructing homeless shelters, beach cleanup drives, blood donation camps, and volunteering at animal shelters are just some of the community initiatives that come to mind.
But am I also suggesting that all childfree people could do is get home from work and put their feet up? You bet. They have already made their contribution by not burdening the world with more people. What more is there to do?
Childfree couples don’t have to turn into philanthropic angels overnight just because they don’t have the responsibility of taking care of a bunch of rowdy ragamuffins. They are not a substitute to a solid foundation for community, health, and elder care which is the obligation of a government towards its tax-paying citizens.
In fact, there are dime-a-dozen families out there who are nothing but a set of bloodsucking leeches, sucking the world dry of some of its most precious resources. As a childfree person, I’m not going to be guilt-tripped into “making my contribution” while some people make money through some of the most ridiculuous means possible.
Cashmeousside?….. Selfie kid?……. Khaby Lame?
What significant contributions have any of them made to society? What technology, product, or equipment did they invent that greatly eased the lives of the millions of disenfranchised poor all across the world? What charity organizations did they start? Once you’re rich and famous, nobody cares. But if you’re a mere mortal living and working amongst ordinary everyday people, you must start a family and reproduce like everyone else. This is the unwritten and unspoken rule of society.
We live in an age of instant gratification and instant fame as millions of people starve to death and a billion more are homeless. The plot twist in this, is that people who once used to be desperate and in need of assistance are readily acquiescent to the needs and demands made by the rich once they’re on their side. They take on the role of the oppressor, the ones they detested and despised all along. As long as our societies give us only two options to choose from, be either extremely rich or extremely poor, we’ll always be living, breathing, walking contradictions. So it isn’t really the fault of these influencers that they side with the oppressors once they themselves start to gain something out of it. But in all seriousness, these online sensations should be using their fast acquired fame and prestige to rid the world of some of its most pressing issues, not resting on their laurels and basking in the limelight.
We shouldn’t be allowed to revel in our achievements until the last homeless person has a roof over his head, the last village has gotten electricity, the last set of women got their rights and freedoms back, the last group of starving children have some food on their plates, and until the last bunch of developing countries have been eradicated of the societal ills that plague them.
Yet somehow, the world puts family people high up on a pedestal and showers them with constant attention while childfree people rarely have, if any, friends or family members to look out for them, and are ridiculed for wanting to live without any additional responsibilities.
I don’t have a problem with someone pole dancing to make a living on OnlyFans. I dont’ have a problem with Cashmeousside or selfie kid. In fact, I’m happy that they’ve figured stuff out so early on in life.
What I do have a problem with is that as a childfree non-famous person I’m somehow held to a higher standard of moral and social responsibility, and I’m suddenly expected to cure all the societal ills that plague the world with all the free time I have from not raising kids, which is a wholly erroneous thought process in itself.
Why Are “Pro-Lifers” More Concerned With Potential Than Reality?
Pro-lifers, I’ve noticed, like to talk about what they would do in hypothetical situations, but don’t like to discuss…
Am I saying that childfree folk are free from the condescension or judgement passed on them by the world? No. Am I saying that childfree people must turn into selfish hustlers who do nothing but work and party as the world burns just because they have the time and agency to do so? Am I saying that childfree people should be let off the hook as regards to environmental, social, and community contributions just because they didn’t introduce one additional bloodsucking parasite to this world?
Everyone must make some kind of meaningful contribution to society, lest they want their city streets to look something like this:
That’s what a society that’s been left to its own vices looks like. I won’t blame you if you thought that was a zombie plague at first glance. For those of you who didn’t watch the video, it’s not. It’s just what our societies begin to look like when they’ve been ravaged by capitalism, greed, consumerism, and individualistic tendencies.
That’s what a city that doesn’t take care of its elders and working mothers look like. That’s what a city with paltry investments in community welfare, education, and health looks like. That’s what every country in the world will start looking like unless they stop blatantly splurging on individual rights, and start investing more into community and communal welfare tools right now. Individualism in itself isn’t wrong. Practicing individualism while neglecting community obligations and responsibilities is what is.
So let’s take the spotlight off childfree folk and start investing in community resources today. Whether that help comes from family folk or childfree people is totally irrelevant.