We’re all …family

There’s now eight billion of us in the world…and growing so fast it’s projected to reach 9.8 billion by 2050. That’s another 1.8 billion more in just 27 years!! And to think that less than 100 years ago – 1927 to be exact – the world had only 2 billion people! Maybe we should quit talking about “breeding like rabbits”!!? Well, to be fair, and not exaggerate our copulating prowess, most of the increase was due to better living conditions and medicine etc!! But maybe because of the skyrocketing increase, the theme this year is “The impact of demographic trends”. Exciting, huh??!
But with all of that, we can’t take things for granted – as shown by countries with declining populations, like Japan, that needs to be reminded there’s still the need to breed – and ensure we at least keep our species going. And to do that takes two – not only to tango, but tangle and make babies. While there’s a growing tendency in certain societies to have a growing number of single mothers, there’s still a consensus that the family’s still the best arrangement to make babies. This was a social innovation even before we were walking on our knuckles! No matter how you cut it, slice it or dice it, human babies really can’t raise themselves and remain “human”!
And it’s why, in 1993, the UN decided we need to be reminded to commemorate the “International Day for Families” every May 15. But you didn’t notice any “commemoration” here, did you, dear reader?? It doesn’t look like we think much about families here in our dear old mudland. And it shows!! Somewhere along the line, it seems, we’ve lost the plot about families. To a large extent, that’s because parents seem to’ve forgotten they’re the members of the family who’re supposed to socialise their children to be responsible members of society. These parents want to remain infantilised more than their children!!
So, the next time you feel like complaining about crime, or bad drivers, or bad anything that’s done by people – remember much of it goes back to the failure of the family and their heads – old Mom and Dad!! They used to say that “it takes a village to raise a child” – but that’s tough when there’s a failure of the child’s parents! Some of this estrangement comes from the newfangled ideas about “parenting” that forbids disciplining children. Now, your Eyewitness ain’t saying you gotta be like Matilda’s parents – the Wormwoods – but still, kids gotta know that society got rules!!
Anyhow, your Eyewitness is miffed that the authorities ignored the UN’s Family Day. We may have to discipline them with the rod of correction on June 2!!

…oil producers’
Have you noticed the number of officials schlepping up to the Middle East recently?? Well, while we mightn’t be members of OPEC, we’re all members of the oil producers’ club!! Birds of a feather stick together!! But each flock have their own nuances, don’t they?? Eagles, for instance, have different rules than Hummingbirds!! So, what should we know about these Middle Eastern oil producers?
Right off the bat, there’s their rivalries!! Take Qatar, which the President is presently visiting. They’re quite at odds with the grandaddy of oil producers – Saudi Arabia!! Until recently being a thumb sticking out of the Saudi mainland, they were treated like a vassal state. But the present rulers started asserting themselves since the 1990s. They leveraged their massive gas deposits to act independently, and actually opposed the Saudis on a number of fronts. For instance, they support Islamist leaders who’re the bane of the Saudi Monarchy!!
Then they’re quite cozy with the Saudi’s bete noir – Iran. Gotta step carefully up there, Mr President!!

Back in the day B.M. (Before Money!), there was the gag that gynaecologists would send women for a drive up the East Bank Road to Timehri if they had problems with delivery!! We’ve returned there recently – but relief’s been promised!