Making the world perfect always ends badly

A few days ago, two women appeared on TV to announce that they had decided never to have any children because they were terrified that the planet was being laid waste by climate change.

The natural world was being wiped out, they said. So how could they possibly give birth to children who would have no future? Some 90 women have now joined this “birth strike” campaign.

Leave to one side whether these poor women have been terrified out of their wits by a theory that is without foundation. Reacting to the claim that human existence is causing unstoppable global catastrophe, they have become so despairing they want to extinguish the possibility of new human existence altogether.

It is therefore perhaps the most literal demonstration of how, as was first said during the French revolutionary terror, the revolution consumes its own. Issue by issue, the cultural revolution that has been perpetrated in the West for the past several decades by the contemporary heirs of Marat, Danton and Robespierre is following the same pattern.

…The crime of the not-radical-enough is somehow to stand in the way of an ideology at the root of which is invariably an idealistic desire to perfect the world. Whether it’s about producing equality, eradicating prejudice and hatred from the human heart or saving the planet from extinction, this impossible pursuit of utopia has resulted in persecution, tyranny and the victimisation of the innocent, an abuse of power that is being replicated all over again today.

To read my whole Times column (£), please click here.

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