Friday, October 9, 2009

A Tragedy of Best Intentions

It had to be 20 or so years ago that a speaker came to our Rotary Club in Orange, Connecticut with a plea for funds for a program of Rotary International to stamp out poliomyelitis from the Philippines. It seems polio was the number one killer of children with an obscene percent of the children dying from the malady. Having been interested in population explosion over the years I was aware that the Philippines was listed as one of the poor nations with more population than food with a high death rate of starving children. After his talk the speaker asked for questions and I raised my hand to ask about the fate of more children surviving as the result of Rotary inoculations. I recall the answer as if it were today. He said,"That's a philosophical problem. Next question?"
The sad story of children starving all over the world will some day become a dark side of our history. Next to war it should be considered the darkest side. Polio was completely stamped out in the Philippines due in part to my club's contributions. Today there are children migrating to cities all over the world where they beg for food or money to buy it. I am still a Rotarian and at this point our National effort is to stamp out polio from the earth. A laudable activity? Even more laudable would be a world-wide effort to stop over population. The most humanitarian effort mankind should put forth is population control. Birth control in all forms should be our most important effort since we have discovered that there is a limit as to how much food our planet can produce. I often receive 4 and more requests for funds to save starving children the world over in each day's mail and the riots in our great cities from over population should not be necessary to fire up our population to declare it high on the list of subjects of importance to address. What a sad situation. Save the children from polio and watch them die of starvation on the streets a few years later.


  1. I always marvel at the way your brain works. Such a tragic situation which I don't believe I'd thought about before. Not sure what the best case scenerio would be - frightful global problem.

  2. Hi George.
    This is something that few consider when asked to be charitable for children.
    Planned Parenthood is a worhtwhile organization always seeking funds to further this cause.
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Keep them coming...