Every news media outlet has covered that the fertility rates are down in the United States. Many try to focus on the reasons behind the drop, but it is not hard to understand why more and more people are choosing not to have kids.
One of the reasons that was quoted time and time again on Twitter was money. The growing economic gap between classes is just the beginning. The systematic oppression of people of color and the continued violence doesn’t really enhance our desire to have children. Why should we? Why would we want children to be born in a country with systemic inequality, and no government. Plus, healthcare is not affordable and having a child is not cheap.
Americans are having fewer babies than ever before — and it might not be enough to sustain the population pic.twitter.com/23yfdFYRmk
— NowThis (@nowthisnews) January 14, 2019
The United States continues to be one of THREE countries without paid parental leave. Paid parental leave would allow more women and child bearing people to have an income while they spend time with their children, and an incentive to perform better for the companies they work for. It would also help the economy drastically.
Another issue is healthcare. Around 8% of the population in the US has no healthcare coverage. This means that around 28.5 million people are uninsured, according to the census in 2017. Those are just the ones reported. Undocumented immigrants and other vulnerable communities have no access to healthcare services.
The current administration’s fight on immigration presents another problem. The lowering of birth rates wouldn’t really be a problem if someone would cover the work that needs to be done. That usually means immigrants. The xenophobia and overt racism expressed by the current administration causes economical repercussions when there are not enough people who do the work for those in need in this country.
A new study for the Center for Retirement Research shows that the population rates will not recover in the future, which will cause social programs for senior citizens to be more expensive.
So, whether the population decline will shift or the immigration policies will change in order to ease the problem remains to be seen.0