In the past there were reasons why people had large families, in part it was because of a lack of being able to prevent pregnancies, in part it was because more children meant more help on the farm, additionally since there was poorer health care, more children meant that hopefully some would survive.
Now a days there is very little reason for having a large family. We know how to prevent unwanted pregnancies, we have machines that do most farm work in less time, and we have health care ensuring the survival of most of our off spring. Yet, we also have a social safety net that provides funding for people who have children and cannot afford them.
The United Nations recently warned us that the Number One Threat facing human continued existence, barring Nuclear threat, is actually human over population. Very few nations have done anything to address this. China being the one we most hear about. In fact we really hear very little of this issue at all, unless we go out of our way to hear it. Most people are in denial or are ignorant that this is even a factor.
The United Nations established what they felt was a sustainable population level of 5 Billion, however in 2008 we have passed over 6.7 Billion people, and most whom you ask, will say there is not a problem. That the Earth is doing a great job of sustaining those people.
In fact there is indeed enough food to go around at this time, but food is not the only concern. Increased population demands increased space, increased housing, increased consumerism. While it is not in our backyard as such, the forests that clean our air and provide oxygen are being clear cut, species are being lost, and pollution levels are exploding.
Our families are not as huge as they used to be, but the problem now is because of decreases in infant mortality and our own longer lifespans, there are simply too many people on the planet. We are currently adding to the population far more people than are dying.
Has your city grown? Has it consumed farm land to make room for more housing? How much larger will your city get in ten to twenty years when housing is required for the youth of today? What will be lost?
How many children can you afford if the government does not help you at all? Is having children a right or a priviledge? In twenty years what will the world be like for your children? Will more crowding bring more stress? More pollution?
Think now, act now, if you want a bright future for your children, start by not having more than two. Even two is population growth, because very likely you and your partner are still alive. In fact until you die, your children are growth, and if they have children before you die, again that is growth. Your parents might pass away, but who has replaced them? You?
Generations ago we died much younger than we do today, so best way of compensating for this is for us to reduce the number of children we have. If we do not act on our own, the government will undoubtedly have to step in and dictate who can have children and who cannot, or some such other arrangement. I personally stopped at one child and urge you to consider this as well.