The collapse of fertility rates in the United States has very bad implications for the future of this country—for our fiscal solvency, our culture, our way of life... pretty much everything.
Bad news: It's not getting any better.
A new survey from the Pew Research Center found that 44% of non-parents ages 18 to 49 say it's not too likely, or not at all likely, that they will have children someday, an increase of 7 percentage points from the 37% who said the same in 2018.
The survey doesn't bode well for a reversal of the downward trend in U.S. fertility rates, which have been hammered by the public health and economic crises caused by the pandemic. The number of babies born in the country fell 4% to about 3.6 million in 2020, the largest decline since 1973, according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
What will happen to a country that gives up on having children? To quote the prescient movie Children of Men:
As the sound of the playgrounds faded, despair set in.
This is a problem we can foresee. We can fix it before it's too late.