The neighbor I recently had a misunderstanding with is my friend again. The other day he and I were catching up on world affairs. We talked about the mass of plastic and garbage in the middle of the Pacific Ocean that has grown to the size of the United States. However, when it came to the over-population of this planet he offered up a rather radical, and somewhat painful solution.
We need another Black Plague.
No, that is not a misprint, nor a genuine misrepresentation of what was said. He assured me that Planet Earth is overpopulated, and that we do not have the resources to sustain the rate of growth we as a species are currently at. He claims that a plague, or virus should come along and kill four to five billion (with a B folks) souls instantly. He argues against a complete extinction of the human species in one fell swoop. Nor should there be people left to linger and die weeks after getting sick, such as the after effects of a nuclear winter. The virus can’t be a slow killer he argued, because people might live long enough to breed. No population decline if the people live long enough to breed. He believes that a certain number of humans should survive to maintain the infrastructure already in place. Apparently such a catastrophic thinning of the human population might bring anarchy and despotism.
What blows my mind is that this guy has been to a University and earned a degree in Nursing. He wants to help heal these very people that have overpopulated the Earth. The people he has compared to Cancer because of the similarity in the way we each grow, and destroy our hosts.
What is also quite disturbing is how much thought he has put into his theory. He explained his idea to me with a calm confidence that left me with the impression that he clearly thought this out, and was not just a mad man fetching these thoughts out of the air as he found them. So instead of studying for his exam to get his nursing license in the last 18 months, he has spent time on the net, and came up with an idea that may save the Earth.
I will now think twice before asking him how things are going.