General Question

phaedryx's avatar

Should the U.S. be worried about its declining fertility rate?

Asked by phaedryx (6099 points ) February 2nd, 2013

I just read this article

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8 Answers

laureth's avatar

There are some problems caused by having too few people. There are some problems caused by having too many people. I think we should look at the effects of both problems and decide which is worse. Then we will have our answer.

ragingloli's avatar

Just import them from mexico, problem solved. Or actually, you do not even have to do that, they are importing themselves.

PhiNotPi's avatar

AP Human Geography time!

First of all, the problem isn’t the fact that there wouldn’t be enough people. There is enough people.

The main problems that could occur are due to the changes in the dependancy ratio. The dependancy ratio is the ratio of nonworking to working individuals. As a larger overall percentage of the population is above retirement, each working person must support more people who don’t (often can’t) work. As for now, this isn’t a major problem. There are easily enough immigrants to make up for any decrease in native-born population.

Some other effects include more job openings for migrant workers (workers immigrating from other countries), or at least a better jobs market, as there is less competition when there are fewer competing people. The unemployment rate decreases.

Another side effect is that there might be more social tensions, as people are now under more financial stress to support more people.

The increase in migrant workers might also cause anti-immigration feelings, as immigrants are competitors in the jobs market, and there are also cultural differences.

RareDenver's avatar

It’s not just the US it’s pretty much all of what we regard as the white westernised democratic societies. We don’t need to be having more children we just need to make sure the children we do have reach their full potential in life to support themselves and create a supportive society that encourages individuality along with unity.

mattbrowne's avatar

For planet Earth as a whole this is good news. In developing countries the fertility rates are actually declining much faster, but from a higher level. Hopefully the planet’s population peaks at 9 billion.

In Western countries one issue has to be addressed: How do we have to adjust our overall infrastructure, job market and financial planning for an aging society? I wouldn’t call it a worry, but it’s a challenge, no doubt.

laureth's avatar

This report, put out by the Royal Society, would imply that shrinking populations would be the way to go. The Wall Street Journal, however, has an interest in promoting a business-friendly agenda, such as Rupert Murdoch and NewsCorp might agree to, which isn’t necessarily in the best interests of most folks.

rojo's avatar

Are you asking if white america should be worried? I think that particular demographic is the only one that is said to be problematic.

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