Does the US Have a Population Problem
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My journal article for review is on the United States population. The author published an article on the current state of the population in the US, that focuses on four key pillars including the existing US population policy, the effect of population growth on the environment, the rising rate of the population on the overall quality of life, future projections of the US population and the best possible measures of achieving stability in the already high US population. In terms of policies, it analyzes the policies in place to manage population growth. The government encourages couples to have more children and has stipulated tax reductions for large families. To encourage more families to have children, the government has gone a notch higher to add taxes to facilitate college fee for children from such families (Facing the Future).
The article cites immigration policies as having contributed to the existing population increase status in the US. Regarding the environmental impacts, the author examines the environmental experts’ views on the correlation between the increasing number to the effect on natural resources exploitation and depletion, the general products consumption patterns and the waste generated. The impact of overpopulation can also be felt at the social level, and the number is projected to increase even more in the years to come.
The author of this article is an economic expert and provides an in depth insight into the possible causes of overpopulation in the US. In addressing the four major issues highlighted above, the author assumes that the readers are already familiar with or have heard the consequences of high immigration levels such as competition for the limited resources and unemployment for some locals. The issues are addressed in details with facts provided from existing situations, other credible sources and previous researches done by experts.
Population growth in the US is a crucial topic of discussion that affects almost all the citizens of the country, my classmates included. The effects highlighted are familiar to everyone’s day to day experiences. It is inevitable to discuss proper urban planning without evaluating the possible consequences of population growth to a country’s development process.
The author’s analysis of population growth in the US is adequate and credible. To begin with, a background analysis of the population in the past years, mostly 1990s is provided to make readers understand the origins of the presented arguments. Several references have been made to other sources to support arguments and valid points given. The terminologies used are simply and easy to understand. In cases where the author has used vocabularies, meanings are provided consequently to enhance understanding. For instance a section highlighting that, ‘Politically, the US is considered to be “pro-natal,” meaning that it has national policies in place that encourage people to have more children.’’
The issues highlighted are of paramount importance and should be considered by national policy makers and governments. Previous research has indicated that the modern trend of increased number of immigrants in the United States came about following the 1965 Immigration Act that led to the termination of the quota systems nationally. From that time, the number of immigrants to the USA has gradually increased and now stands at about one million annually (Birkerland 208-210). The national immigration policies have been criticized as the major contributing factors to the current state. While critics have argued that immigrants have taken up American jobs, reduced natural resources and increased economic burden on social facilities and needs, defenders have retaliated that these very immigrants make significant contributions towards the economic development. Neutralists have urged that instead of playing the blame game, the US government should instead seek to find appropriate measures to address the looming economic inequalities and injustices.
These greatly contributes to the growing rate of population and hence affects the quality of social life. Today, there is more demand for development land that has led to clearing of forest and agricultural land, hence reducing the food production rates that can efficiently cater for the capacity of the over 200million people in the US. There is also demand to expand existing number of recreational facilities to accommodate rapidly growing population as Jorgen puts it that, ‘the more crowded we become, and the more our daily life resembles the "poultry broiler factories," the greater the need for parks, playgrounds, and other recreational facilities’’ (Martin, and Fogel). It is also true that increased population in the United States directly affects the ecological system. Environmental experts have noted that the decision of not to have an additional child is twenty times effective than all the other efforts made by stakeholders like recycling, pollution management and the use of energy appliances that are efficient.
In conclusion, it is evident that the rate of the population growth in the United States has directly been impacted by the existing US population and immigration policies. This increased population has brought about adverse effects on environment degradation and the overall quality of life. The future projection is that the US population is bound to increase at a faster rate to about 500million people in 2050. Population growth control is very important if the future economic, political and social challenges are to be conquered. The author of the article suggests that the best way to curb the environmental problems globally and the overall well being of all humanity are to refrain from bearing other human beings (p.47). Jorgen emphasizes this by concluding that, ‘It is by the use of intelligence that man introduced death control, and unless he introduces birth control, the problem of survival will eventually defeat him’’ (Martin, and Fogel).
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