Got Problems?  Maybe Africans Need To Stop Having So Many Babies

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What it must be like, to be suddenly thrust with power, or to be rich beyond measure; two attributes this world cherishes. The rich can think themselves wise. The powerful can believe they know how you should live your life.

French president Emmanuel Macron, 39, newly-elected to his position of power, spoke at the recent G20 summit in Hamburg. Macron was asked about programs to help Africa (specifically why there was no “Marshall Plan”). Part of Macron’s reply:

“The challenge of Africa is completely different, it is much deeper. It is civilizational today. Failing states, complex democratic transitions … One of the essential challenges of Africa … is that in some countries today, seven or eight children [are] born to each woman.”

Macron received flak for his disrespecting a whole continent, especially the use of the word civilizational, which tells me is: “The act or process of civilizing, as by bringing out of a savage, uneducated or unrefined state.”

Such an unfortunate word from a Frenchman, whose country once controlled several northern African nations as colonies, as late as 1960.

If only those savages would heed the young, refined Macron, especially those women having all those babies. Macron and his wife have no children; so, neither should you, or at least not so damn many. (For transparency, my wife has birthed nine children. We’re from Maine … an “unrefined state”?)

Meanwhile, in London, the British government, along with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the U.N. Population Fund, held a “Family Planning Summit” on Tuesday, July 11. The goal is to provide billions in “family planning” in terms of contraception and abortion services worldwide, in underdeveloped countries.

Great Britain pledged $1.4 billion over five years. Canada already pledged $650 million this year for not only contraceptives and abortions, but also for lobbying efforts to change laws in countries where abortion is illegal.

Think about that, Canadians. Your tax dollars going overseas to influence how other countries govern.

Has anyone asked those other countries if they want such help from the advanced, ‘civilized’ nations? Uju Ekeocha knows the answer. A biomedical scientist, with dual citizenship in Britain and Nigeria, she told the Catholic Herald that “none of these countries [in Africa] has asked for this ‘aid’ money. In all my work with African countries, I don’t know of any which is screaming, ‘come and help us, we have this abortion crisis’.”

 Ms. Ekeocha refers to a 2013 poll citing overwhelming opposition to abortion. She called the unwanted intervention another form of colonization.

Ms. Ekeocha once wrote an open letter to Melinda Gates about the Gates Foundation’s contraception plan “to ensure that the African woman is less fertile, less encumbered and, yes, she says, more ‘liberated.’ With her incredible wealth, she wants to replace the legacy of an African woman (which is her child) with the legacy of ‘child-free sex’.”

So much money, Ms. Ekeocha said, could help in terms of proper health care, food and education programs, and other types of real assistance.

Ms. Ekeocha is a practicing Catholic, a religion opposed to the “family planning” methods of Melinda Gates’s agenda. But Ms. Gates is confident even that can be fixed. In a BBC interview, she said she is “optimistic” the Catholic Church will change its teaching on contraception.

But such Church teachings do not change. They do not depend on polls (and, yes, I know what the vast majority think), nor the influence of wealthy-beyond-measure individuals, nor politicians.

Ms. Gates said she has worked with the Church because of their “shared mission around social justice and anti-poverty.”

In those areas, Church teaching also has not changed – feed the hungry, clothe the naked, welcome the stranger, look after the sick, visit the imprisoned. Good places to start. Build a school, while you’re at it.

I’ll leave Ms. Ekeocha the final word, repeating a tweet she sent out a year ago:

“I’m an African woman. I don’t need free condoms. I don’t need contraception. I don’t need abortion rights. What I need is education.”



Kevin Thomas is a writer and former teacher living with his wife and children in Standish, Maine.