Thursday, June 17, 2010


If I read one more asinine joke ending with the phrase 'Love is a Battlefield' in reference to David Benatar, I'm gonna kill a puppy, I swear!*

*Said puppy will be fed its choice of a fast-food last meal, administered a gentle sedative via ham-flavored chewy, and euthanized by the most humane means available.


Shadow said...

Jim, today I mention my whole antinatalist rationale to my folks.

My mother reacted as expected, mocking my reasonings as she could, asking me: "so you think you are saving the world?" and stuff like that.

well... it was as normal as expected. You cant expect normal folk to react accordingly....

Shadow said...

Thanks for the help guys :´(

Compoverde said...

So I had an interesting thought on the effect of antinatalism. Though people might disagree with it, the fact is that it makes you think about the value of life. For a second people might have to ponder why they live. Why they go to work, why they do anything. To ponder the idea of procreation and its ethics, is to ponder the meaning of existence. Maybe for a split second they can look deeper into things before they go on distracting themselves and stressing themselves with the pressures of life.

Ann Sterzinger said...

Shadow: you can quote them my favorite Philip Larkin poem:

poetry | prints | cine | home
Philip Larkin - This Be The Verse

They fuck you up, your mum and dad.
They may not mean to, but they do.
They fill you with the faults they had
And add some extra, just for you.

But they were fucked up in their turn
By fools in old-style hats and coats,
Who half the time were soppy-stern
And half at one another's throats.

Man hands on misery to man.
It deepens like a coastal shelf.
Get out as early as you can,
And don't have any kids yourself.

-- That last verse always makes me cry

Ann Sterzinger said...

PS HOLY SHIT -- do I feel like an idiot -- I just realized that if you scroll down below the brain-smashing threat that I've read and morbidly laughed over multiple times, you find that THE POEM I JUST POSTED IS ALREADY POSTED ON THIS SITE! Der. Sorry. Well, at least I know I'm not alone in my taste in poetry... mea culpa. My internet etiquette is, once again, exposed as clumsy.

Shadow said...

Ann Sterzinger,

why do you cry in the last verse?

Ann Sterzinger said...

Because while, given the evidence (as lyrically expressed in the first two lines of the verse), the conclusion Larkin comes to in the final line is right and good, it also feels tragic: the only humane end for the thinking animal is a total one. Which is probably why our brains want so badly to veer away from this conclusion; to do otherwise is wrong, but to do so is sad. Also, there's just something very crushing about the line "it deepens like an ocean shelf" that I can't put my finger on.

Ann Sterzinger said...

DALGH I meant "coastal shelf" -- who put downers in my coffee today!?

CM said...

Shadow - I don't know if discussing antinatalism with your parents is productive, especially if they are not of child-bearing age. It's hard to accept the fact that you irreparably injured and, for all intents and purposes, killed the person you were supposed to care for and protect, so I guess your mother went the other route. Sadly, the person who is likely to be hurt by these conversations the most is yourself...

Shadow said...

Ann -

You are right, I could´ve not put it better myself.

CM -

what do u mean by "not child-bearing age"?

Other than that, I agree with you in this:

It´s no use discussing this someone´s parents, really, sometimes like in the Matrix motive, Morpheus says that the mind has trouble to forget stuff, well, for common folk, when they have kids is like they seal this ethics thinking and it´s "good bye, so long" to reason.

And I agree that I´ve heard some bull from her, all in all light manner and most of the time she was like joking, not really discussing,which is fine, that´s how she´s dealing with it.

Other than that, we can sure learn a lot about our parents and see that they are intrigued and confused by it, as like saying: "maybe I did something wrong", but not being able to recognise it.

I agree that it´s not always a good experience, but all in all, I´m not hurt, I´ve learned a lot about them in the discussion, and now I know that they are weak minded.

Thanks for all the support.

Shadow said...

weak-minded, as in: they did not think through this, as most people don´t.

They actually said that suffering is part of life...

what are you gonna do, right? =)

French_dude said...

But there´s this other true thing.

Being "hurt" with others is related to one´s level of expectancy...

If one expect people to be "people" - meaning self-centered bullshit pricks - then one tends no to get hurt by comments and false ideas.

Other than that, listening to irrational thoughts is just this - listening to irrational thoughts.

Antinatalism if it should be right, needs to be tested idiot-proof.

metamorphhh said...

French dude:

That's what we're here for, doing our best. Looking forward to your contributions.

CM said...

Shadow -

by child-bearing age I mean "fertile", or "likely to have more children".

Frendh Dude - you are right. It's just that one's parents tend to be even more irrational than the general population. I daresay Jim's kids got lucky. Well, except for the whole being brought into existence thing.

Anonymous said...

How many of you, at least at times, resent your parents for dragging you into existence? I frequently experience such sentiments. However, despite the fact that I believe myself to be justified in feeling this way (I am, after all, a hardcore antinatalist), society seems to have cowed me into shame over it--i.e., it must be a sign of weakness and I must be pathetic, etc. Sometimes I find myself lashing out at my mom for her many faults as a parent, and I'm particularly vexed by her frequent admonitions that "life is hard". All I can think is, "If you feel that way, why the fuck did you thrust it upon me?" I'd be interested to hear about whether/how others' antinatalist leanings affect(ed) their relationships with their own parents.

Chip said...


I watched my mother die. Her last words were: "Something is very, very wrong." We had a difficult and complicated relationship, but at that moment I loved her desperately.

Unknown said...

Anon., I almost made a post about resenting parents for having you just the other day. For example, I inherited my chronic anxiety and related mood disorder from my mother. This has caused me great suffering. But she inherited it from her father.How far does the chain of misery stretch back in time? All I can do is end the pain for potential offspring of my own.

Unknown said...

Anon., I almost made a post about resenting parents for having you just the other day. For example, I inherited my chronic anxiety and related mood disorder from my mother. This has caused me great suffering. But she inherited it from her father.How far does the chain of misery stretch back in time? All I can do is end the pain for potential offspring of my own.

TGGP said...

I wonder what Larkin would think of Judith Rich Harris.

Garrett said...


Sorry I didn't jump in here earlier. I think I read your comment around the time you posted it, but I sometimes just let things sink in for a while, then by the time I have something to say that might be helpful... I end up distracted with something else in life.

The thought that it's probably not very "productive" to bring up your antinatalist position to your parents is one that I must respectfully disagree with. It's not an easy subject to breach, that much is certain. It's probably just as (if not more) difficult as it is for a person to admit to one's parents that they are homosexual (though in this case, children are often seeking parental approval). Now that I think about it, the parental stress seems to manifest itself for similar biological reasons. In both incidents, parents must come to terms with the fact that they will never have grandchildren. To that, I say tough shite :P

I think the decision to make your position known to your parents is one that should be made on a case by case basis. For example: Let's say that one is an only child, and comes to the "repugnant conclusion" at a time in life when both parents are no longer capable of reproduction. I share CM's opinion. It would be best to just let the subject be. They may become despondent or unduly stress themselves (and in turn, cause you distress) I understand there may be a desire to make one's position known in this case, but it may indeed do more harm than good. Parents frequently have children because they want a little clone of themselves. I know we sometimes feel that tired old attitude of, "You hit me, so I'm gonna tag you back!" We would do well to instruct ourselves on how not to lash out and attempt to strike back in a verbal sense. By doing that, we successfully thwart their attempts at creating another flawed version of themselves. After all, there is no longer a risk of genetic expansion, and their memetic abilities and desires are all but finished. Each of us has the ability to be the end of their twisted genetic lineage, and that's a truly awesome thing.

Garrett said...

Take another scenario: Your parents are middle aged, and you have siblings who are just getting into the nesting phase of life. Brothers and sisters begin fully embracing the life lie by finding religion, embracing Darwin's theory, the "circle of life" philosophy, etc... Your parents might, in fact, be ENCOURAGING reproductive behavior in their other children. In such a case, it might be prudent to make your position known to your parents and/or siblings. When I say "make it known" I mean a very light touch. Don't EVER try to proselytize. This is a poor tactic. They nearly always see it as a personal attack. Christians, vegans, and Hare Krishnas have all struck out by using this method ;) The absolute best thing you can do is be humble. Be understanding. Demonstrate to them that you do know what it's like to care for and even lose someone you care about so they won't constantly attempt to invalidate you by saying things like, "Once you have children, you'll understand". Mention little things here and there when the subject of birth rears it's ugly head. Comments like, "Have you considered adoption? There are a lot of children (or animals) who need loving homes". Force them to introspect for a moment. I guarantee most people will question themselves and their motivations (if only for a moment) when confronted with sincerity. Compoverde, you're right on :)

I used to consider myself a misanthrope. That was until I made a comment to a friend of mine. He told me he felt he was becoming more racist with each passing day. "Blicksem! Those fucking kaffirs, they're lower than baboons!" So I asked him, "What about your Zulu friend, you like him don't you?". "Yeah, you're right dude.", he replied. "I think if you can find a single black person that you care about, you can't possibly be a racist because you're judging him by the content of his character; not his skin color.". "Hmm, never thought about it that way before... thanks boet." During my year in South Africa, I too came to the realization that I didn't hate everyone. I came to know two great people while I was there. While we don't agree on everything, we agreed on this: Humanity, as a whole, is a parasite. So what if I take it a step further and admit that all life as we know it is a fuck up? We still have common ground with regard to humanity.

If we can see eye to eye on antinatalism, none of us here can claim to be true misanthropes. We may despise the disgusting and cruel behavior of humanity as a whole, but I know, deep down, we pity them. Granted, we're all prisoners of planet Earth; locked in fleshy little cages, but there is no reason that we must allow ourselves to be ruled by biology and atavism. If people could get over the idea that life isn't a game, a contest, nor an ass kissing fest for some god/gods favor, but is in fact a struggle to escape a vicious and unforgiving cycle... minds would begin to change. Remember, it only happens on an individual level; one person at a time.


Garrett said...

Wow, Chip. Very profound. I don't think I have anything very appropriate to say to that. I feel like I'm cheapening it right now... sorry for that. It's just such a shame that so many people don't realize that something is wrong with the world until the world is drawing the curtain on them.

metamorphhh said...

Reading so many blogs lately, what really sucks is how philanthropic sentiments wind up turned around and translated as 'anti-human'. I can't tell you how many times I've seen that term this week.

The Plague Doctor said...

Ann, I've tried my hand at a bit of doggerel myself...

Imagine there're no people
It's easy if you try
No-one fearing death
As there's no-one left to die.
Imagine there're no people
Dying for tomorrow.

Imagine there's no suffering
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine there're no people
Living life in war.

You may say that I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no pain
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
No brotherhood of man
Imagine there're no people
Despairing in the world

You may say that I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will live as one

Anonymous said...

"Judith Rich Harris"

I found her "rebuttal" or response kind of lame:

"Poor old Mum and Dad: publicly accused by their son, the poet, and never given a chance to reply to his charges. They shall have one now, if I may take the liberty of speaking for them.

How sharper than a serpent's tooth
To hear your child make such a fuss.
It isn't fair—it's not the truth—
He's fucked up, yes, but not by us."

What is she trying to say with this? I don't get it? So no one is responsible? Or did Larkin fuck himself up? It's the gene's and peer's fault? What about not creating little Larkins in the first place?