Thursday, September 10, 2009

Europe's demographic and cultural time bomb

Carolyn Moynihan

In Brussels, the top seven boys names recently were Mohamed, Adam, Rayan, Ayoub, Mehdi, Amine and Hamza. Mohamed is also the most popular name in Holland’s four biggest cities. Is anyone surprised?

Perhaps not, but a recent London Telegraph article suggests, with a certain note of alarm, that a “Muslim Europe” is emerging while policy-makers refuse to discuss the potential problems of this “demographic time bomb”. It reminds one a bit of Inspector Clouseau avowing, “It is not my Behm.”


Janina said...

A German friend of mine gave me some insight on at least one of the reasons for the very low birth rate in Europe. He was born in 1976, which indicates that his parents were probably born a few years after WW2. He says that his parents really wanted to have another child but his grandparents strongly discouraged them from doing so. His grandparents pointed out that if there was another war, his parents might be able to manage well enough with only one child, but that they might have to face a lot more hardship or even be forced to choose one child over another if they had two or more. His grandparents probably knew people during the war that were forced to make that terrible choice. The net result of that advice is that my friend is an only child, as many young Germans are these days.

I have heard a lot of speculation on why Europeans have such a low birth rate--from high rates of taxation to radical feminism to 1960s hedonism. However, if my friend's family is in any way typical, the low birth rate may also be one of the lingering aftereffects of WW2, if not the Cold War as well. If so, might it not be possible that Europeans will be more open to having larger families again after the wartime generations are no longer around to give doomsday advice?

Betsy said...

That's a really interesting insight, Janina. Thank you for sharing it. Let's do hope that people will soon stop fearing having more children do to war scares!

Carl said...

Instead of trying to outbreed Muslims -- an exercise in futility -- I have a better idea: How about Europe simply keeping all Muslims out? In other words, let Muslims breed all they want in Muslim countries. Europe already has high population densities. It doesn't a radical increase in its white Christian and freethinker population; it needs a radical decrease in its Muslim population.