February 3, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — International outrage is growing after the Vatican extended an invitation to population control pundit Paul Ehrlich to speak at a February 27-March 1 workshop on “Biological Extinction.” Ehrlich, a supporter of forced sterilization and forced abortion, has epitomized the “ecologist’s” position for decades in his apocalyptic (and false) predictions about the effects of population growth.
Sponsored and organized by the Pontifical Academy of Sciences (PAS) and the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences (PASS), the three-day conference also includes other controversial speakers besides Ehrlich, author of the Population Bomb.
Several presenters have similar, if less well-known pedigrees, as proponents of population control or defenders of the idea that man is nature’s greatest enemy.
Even more remarkable is the fact that no openly Catholic thinker or commentator capable of countering the population control agenda appears to be on the schedule other than Bishop Marcelo Sánchez Sorondo, chancellor of PAS and PASS, and Cardinal Peter Turkson, who is to give a concluding talk.
Sorondo is scheduled simply to provide some words of welcome to the conference. Cardinal Turkson, head of the new dicastery created by Pope Francis for “Promoting Integral Human Development,” will address the symposium on the theme “The Effect of Biodiversity Losses on People: Moral and Ethical Dimensions.”
The true moral and ethical dimension of the “sustainability” debate is nowhere to be found in the schedule or marketing materials for the event.
The presentation booklet for the workshop sets out a purely evolutionist history of the Earth and of mankind, including warnings that “unsustainable” exploitation of natural resources by human beings started some 500 years ago.
Along with Ehrlich, Cambridge University economics professor Sir Partha Dasgupta will speak on “Causes and Pathways of Biodiversity Losses: Consumption Preferences, Population Numbers, Technology, Ecosystem Productivity.”
Dasgupta has written extensively against population growth, drawing a parallel between reduced fertility and increased riches and well being. He has been a speaker at the World Bank, where in 2003 he quoted “agricultural scientists” who “have drawn attention to the fact that future prospects of food being available to the world's poorest inhabitants depend critically on our ability to manage human numbers and natural capital.”
Managing human numbers is no more and no less population control. His paper lauded China’s Human Development Index. The country’s brutal one-child policy held the population in check at the cost of millions of unborn lives, and today the ruling Communist Party is desperately seeking to increase fertility rates as the working population dwindles.
A few years before that, Dasgupta offered his analysis of the “Population Problem: Theory and Evidence” in a paper published by the Journal of Economic Literature. In a lengthy discussion about ways to get human beings to want fewer children in order to bring fertility rates down, he concluded, “When a child becomes perceived as expensive, we may finally have a hope of dislodging the rapacious hold of high fertility rates.”
Dasgupta is also a patron of Population Matters, formerly known as the Optimum Population Trust, which lobbies for a “sustainable population size,” including the “reversing of population growth” in many countries.
Especially troublesome is the fact that Dasgupta will summarize and conclude the Vatican workshop on March 1, getting the last word together with Peter Raven, a biologist who specializes in plants, butterflies, and evolution.
One of Dasgupta’s three daughters, Aisha, is an impact manager at Marie Stopes International, one of the world’s largest abortion providers. She is lead demographer, especially interested by the link between development, environment, population and family planning.
There is a connection with past workshops organized at the Vatican and Aisha Dasgupta. She has worked with Jeffrey Sachs (and his wife Sonia) at the Earth Institute. Sachs moderated and co-hosted a conference on climate change organized by PAS and PASS.
Another speaker at the Vatican symposium is Lord Martin Rees from Cambridge University. The scientist proclaims “no religious beliefs at all,” but received the annual Templeton Prize rewarding “Progress Toward Research or Discoveries about Spiritual Realities” in 2011 for insights he brought into man’s perception of the dimension of physical reality. Rees is focused on the “disruption” man has brought to Earth by sheer numbers and gives only a “50-50” chance that civilization will extend past the 21st century.
Then there is Mathis Wackernagel, whose talk has the sober title “Global footprint.” Along with Professor William Rees of the University of British Columbia, this Swiss-born advocate of “sustainability” invented the concept of man’s “ecological footprint,” which sees each human as a harmful predator whose impact on nature can be quantified and should be reduced.
Wackernagel went on to create the Global Footprint Network. He also touts the notion of “Overshoot,” when a population exceeds the long-term carrying capacity of its environment. In an interview with The New Scientist in 2007, he said, “Overshoot will ultimately liquidate the planet's ecological assets.”
Also a controversial figure and perhaps one of the most scandalous at the Vatican symposium is John Bongaarts, vice president of the Population Council. His subject will be “Population: Current State and Future Prospects.”
The Population Council is a New York-based non-governmental organization founded by John D. Rockefeller III in 1952. Deeply rooted in the eugenics movement, it funded and developed the copper IUD, which acts as an early abortive device, and went on through the years to promote and research into long-term contraceptives such as Norplant, Jadelle and Mirena.
In 1982, the French laboratory that developed the abortion pill RU 486 entered into a partnership with the Population Council to participate in pre-clinical tests in the U.S. In 1993, Roussel-Uclaf, the abortion pill’s owner, licensed what French professor Jerome Lejeune called the “anti-human pesticide” to the Population Council, ceding all its patent rights in 1994.
In a recent article in Nature, Bongaarts slammed “traditional gender roles” as well as the Catholic Church’s opposition to contraception. He also wrote that “where legal, safe abortion services should be made available.”
Preserving nature at the cost of man, pitting “biodiversity” against man’s God-given right to develop and thrive on the Earth that was given him from the beginning, and putting plants and animals over and above humankind are common claims on the “sustainability” agenda. Hatred of human life is at the center of the culture of death, and Paul Ehrlich has been at the heart of population control ideology that has impacted human laws, international institutions, and tyrannical governments.
Can God have been wrong when he ordered mankind to “be fruitful and multiply” as his first commandment to Adam and Eve in Eden, where he placed the first man and the first woman as the masters of Creation? Population control means rejecting traditional religious condemnation of contraception, abortion and euthanasia.
That is why the development of a new spirituality and world religion are part and parcel of many New Age “sustainability” proponents. The true thrust of “sustainability” is the promotion of the sort of nature worship that was so evident in the “Fiat Lux” show projected on Saint Peter’s Basilica in Rome in 2015 to mark the ecological encyclical Laudato si and the United Nations’ COP 21 climate change conference on the reduction of carbon emissions.