Quick Somebody Write Another Love Song

I had originally planned to write this for Halloween, the day that UNESCO or WHO, or one of them acronyms calculates that the world population will reach seven billion.

But though the papers have jumped the gun all week, prisoner of the zeitgeist that I am, I have held on until today.

Happy Halloween. (All seven billion of you.)

SEVEN BILLION, kiddies: Seven billion kiddies. We have overgrazed our forage, we are starving and fear the inevitable plagues; we are in a thousand brushfire conflicts and the world’s economy teeters on the brink — a global meltdown would instantly doom thousands, if not hundreds of thousands to imminent starvation, as the delivery system would go down along with the economy.

Seven billion. Look: there was a mildly satirical song I wrote to sing in the bars I ran open mics in. It was the mid-90s, and, as you’ll see, history has conspired to ruin the meter. You see, I wrote it to commemorate the madness that had taken us to the SIX billion threshold.

And please note: 7 billion today is the UN’s estimate. The U.S. Census Bureau estimates we’ll hit 7 billion in early 2012. But, if you’ve got a news story with no actual substance (merely a statistical model), then you go for the earlier date — since it doesn’t matter anyway, and you can always RE-run your stories again next year.

It goes something like this:

The Rare Breed*
August 8, 1996

[* Note: this title is a very involved private pun that won’t be explained here.]

I am just a simple breed
and breeding means the world to me
Breeding … breeding.

I don’t mind my hormone fate
I live for nights when I can mate
Mating … breeding

Young love

[CHORUS]

Quick somebody write another love song
six Seven billion souls can’t be wrong
and you know it won’t be long
Breeding, breeding, breeding

[VERSE]:

Six Seven billion souls in the world,
we’ve got our battle flags unfurled
for breeding … breeding.

I am just a sack of seeds
serving Mother Nature’s need
for coupling and children …

[CHORUS]

Everybody’s in a pair
ever since we all got hair down there
breeding, coupling and mating

I’m sinking in a sea of flesh
But I know what I like best
breeding, plowing and seeding

[CHORUS]

Quick somebody write another love song
six Seven billion souls can’t be wrong
and you know it won’t be long
Breeding, breeding, breeding

[published by Hartunes, LLC]

Now, I jumped the gun with the original song, since the population didn’t reach 6 billion until 1999.  I gave myself some wiggle room with 6 billion. But I think hereinafter, I will drag it out every time we hit a new billion milestone.

The Open Mic I used to run —
click to take the Acoustic Air Force
Entrance Exam

Sadly, “Seven” wrecks the rhyme scheme, but lucky for me, “Eight,” “Nine,” and “Ten” are all back IN the proper meter, and if I can just make it to 2027, the song ought to fix itself.

According to estimates, we will hit 8 billion in 2027. From Wikipedia:

World population milestones (USCB estimates)
Population
(in billions)
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
Year 1804 1927 1960 1974 1987 1999 2011 2027 2046
Years elapsed –– 123 33 14 13 12 12 16 19

Which means that the growth rate is, perhaps, slowing after adding a billion every 12-14 years since 1974. This also means the the number of humans in the world has MORE than doubled in my lifetime.  When my father-in-law died in 2008, the world’s population had more than tripled in his 100 years.

Acoustic Air Force Staff

And yet, we have almost no handle on our breeding practices. Griswold v. Connecticut only took place in 1965, half a decade after we hit three billion, and now, four decades later, at seven billion, the GOP attacks Planned Parenthood. And Herman Cain (GOP candidate) reiterates his vicious contention:

In a March speech to the conservative Heritage Foundation, Cain said the organization’s mission was to “help kill black babies before they came into the world.”

On Sunday, CBS host Bob Schieffer asked the candidate if he still believed that statement.

“Yes,” Cain replied. “I still stand by that.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xjWhOQB_UcE

Video here

For those that keep track of such things, Margaret Sanger was the patron saint of contraception, at one point exiled from the U.S. by Anthony Comstock’s endless witch hunts — with the full faith and credit of the U.S. Government: following the successes of his Über-censorious New York Society for the Suppression of Vice, Congress placed Comstock in charge of U.S. Mail Inspection, to enforce the newly passed “Comstock Act,” and brought his “obscenity” trials in Federal Court, especially in New York City — then as now, the media Center of the Universe — harassing, in one infamous case, poor Ida Craddock to death by bringing a separate charge for each copy of her innocuous book, “The Wedding Night” and prosecuting them serially. After serving the first term, and facing separate prosecutions on hundreds of additional counts, Craddock committed suicide.

1887 Comstock letter on his letterhead

When Sanger returned from France, she came with several sealed bottles of wine, which contained the first contraceptive sponges seen in America. Later, Sanger was active in the “Eugenics” movement, and paid for the research, after World War II, that resulted in “The Pill.” (And Griswold v. Connecticut, which legalized contraception in the US in 1965.)

Anthony Comstock, America’s Official Censor

What Cain is talking about is a famous misquoted smear, a la “Al Gore says he invented the internet,” which Cain is more than happy to repeat in his quest for the soul of a party who believe that population is God’s Responsibility, but not that the result of enforced pregnancies are any of THEIR responsibility.

It is sheerest fringie “lost cause” sort of conspiracy theory, which you can read, straight from the fetid tap, here.

And, it makes sense to attack the woman whose fifty-year crusade to legalize contraception in the US resulted in the landmark Griswold v. Connecticut AND Planned Parenthood AND the birth control pill. After all, to REALLY demonize Planned Parenthood, a face is needed, and who better than a dead woman who cannot defend herself?

Margaret Sanger. Library of Congress

With the population increasing to unprecedented levels, and the clear evidence that human activity actively and detrimentally affects the biosphere of the planet — a biosphere that human life depends on — what are we arguing about? About forcing women to carry pregnancies to term, since once the zygote is formed, its rights trump any of her rights to make any choice about the next eighteen years.

What are we arguing about? Trying to destroy Planned Parenthood, the first and best organization devoted to contraception and pregnancy services. Yes, including … ABORTION!

The Airheads’ Coat of Harms

Seven billion babies, a Pasadena Rose Bowl’s worth of squiggling, squealing babies plunked down on the planet each and every day.

One of those babies, in the USA, requires the produce of 130 acres per year to live an “average” life style.

And we’re arguing about Planned Parenthood?

Get a goddam* grip.

Or, people that stupid probably DESERVE the classical Malthusian remedy: plague preceded by starvation.

Black death styles for physicians

But the people NOT that stupid don’t deserve Nature’s Own Population Cure™.

So, seven billion little fires and we’re fiddling.

Quick, somebody: write another love song.

And, in that craptacular sort of reporting that we generally ascribe to Rupert Murdoch and the British Tabloids, leave it to the Guardian to turn an estimate (the U.S. Census projects 7 billion some time in early 2011) into a BS story pulled straight out of their sleazy mendacious posteriors:

Doomed by faceless UN Public Relations staff

Jasmine Coleman / Guardian:

World’s ‘seven billionth baby’ is born —  Danica May Camacho, a girl born in Philippine capital Manila, is chosen by UN to symbolically mark global population milestone  —  The world’s seven billionth baby has been born in a packed government-run hospital in the Philippines.

Not ALL of those seven billion are IDIOTS, Ms./Mr. Coleman and the Guardian (UK) and the UN. It is physically not possible to know WHO the seven billionth human is/was/will be.

And you know that. But you have decided that WE are too stupid to know that, and have pointlessly cast the curse of celebrity on a newborn child, whose life will be indelibly marked by your little “simplification for the rubes” PR stunt.

A plague on all your houses.

But not on mine.

Courage.

================

On a personal note, my first published novel, Christina’s Hideaway, hit the shelves 28 years ago, today. Halloween has been a special anniversary for me ever since — after all, one doesn’t generally get a Playboy Playmate of the Month® for one’s first book cover.

* From Saint Joan, George Bernard Shaw:

JOAN. Listen to me, squire. At Domrémy we had to fly to the next village to escape from the English soldiers. Three of them were left behind, wounded. I came to know these three poor goddams quite well. They had not half my strength.

ROBERT. Do you know why they are called goddams?

JOAN. No. Everyone calls them goddams.

ROBERT. It is because they are always calling on their God to condemn their souls to perdition. That is what goddam means in their language. How do you like it?

JOAN. God will be merciful to them; and they will act like His good children when they go back to the country He made for them, and made them for….

Complete text is at Project Gutenberg.

A writer, published author, novelist, literary critic and political observer for a quarter of a quarter-century more than a quarter-century, Hart Williams has lived in the American West for his entire life. Having grown up in Wyoming, Kansas and New Mexico, a survivor of Texas and a veteran of Hollywood, Mr. Williams currently lives in Oregon, along with an astonishing amount of pollen. He has a lively blog His Vorpal Sword. This is cross-posted from his blog.

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About Hart Williams

Mr. Williams grew up in Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas and New Mexico. He lived in Hollywood, California for many years. He has been published in The Washington Post, The Kansas City Star, The Santa Fe Sun, The Los Angeles Free Press, Oui Magazine, New West, and many, many more. A published novelist and a filmed screenwriter, Mr. Williams eschews the decadence of Hollywood for the simple, wholesome goodness of the plain, honest people of the land. He enjoys Luis Buñuel documentaries immensely.
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