Seven billion and many million years later, a tiny baby from Philippines has been chosen as a symbol of the rate of growth poor old Earth is experiencing. The idea I suppose is to illustrate that too many hungry mouths trying to feed themselves from a planet with limited resources will spell the end for us all.
But you know what? We have managed OK for the final few million years. Yes, there’s been the odd glacial period, genocides and planet resources-wrenching madness beyond our wildest nightmares. But when we are born, each of us brings a clean slate under our arm. And who knows? This baby may be the one who one day recognises the DNA pattern that unlocks the missing key for a cancer research cure. Or someone who educates her children on the importance of loving and respecting each other and the environment. Even someone who makes a whole generation laugh with amazing jokes until tears of happiness roll down our cheeks.
We don’t know, and we can only hope that whereas the planet’s equilibrium is a bit out of balance, that we will continue to manage, and bringing our better versions into this world, we will help it continue turning for as long as it can.
Welcome to the world, little one.