Re: “Share of children in U.S. at record low” (TNT, 7-13).
If the trend this piece suggests – fewer children and more seniors – is true, we should adapt to it, not fight it. And that adaptation will probably be mostly economic.
Fewer kids will lower demand for all the clothing and toys required by the younger set. This may come as a blow to China’s economy but I think it’s remarkably resilient. The demand for teachers could decline as well, unless we reduce class size and give our young people the individual attention they need to master this complex world.
Smaller families might also relieve some of the pressure on parents, as well. If you have to divide your time between fewer kids, it may be time better spent. And putting fewer kids through college would take some pressure off the family treasury.
If this brave new scenario were to materialize, a comfortable, certain retirement should be part of it. Of course, Social Security and Medicare and/or other retirement plans would have to be reformed, protected and properly funded – no more threatening to privatize, abolish or borrowing from them.
And, in the long term, our planet would stand a greater chance of survival. Fewer people demanding a share of its limited resources could make life better for everyone.