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Dr. Levine Is An Idiot!

Posted on 31st July 2017

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This story, carried by the BBC, bears the scare-headline "Sperm count drop 'could make humans extinct'". This is the opinion of Dr. Hagai Levine, an epidemiologist at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Not only is the idea that the human race faces the threat of extinction due to reductions in sperm-counts laughable, and ignores some basic science, but such a pronouncement is downright irresponsible given a world population of around 7 billion and growing. Overpopulation is what is causing global warming, the build-up of toxic chemicals in our environment, and by extension is at least partly responsible for the reduced sperm-counts detected by this research. Encouraging people to reproduce more, which is the most likely result of such new stories, is the last thing we need right now.

The reason why I think that this extinction threat is laughable, is because:

  1. Natural selection will minimise or eliminate the reduced fertility that Dr. Levine's research is concerned with.
  2. Human reproduction is limited by several other factors (personal choice, food supply, disease, etc.) rather than sperm-count. Sperm-counts would have to fall a great deal to become the dominant factor in determining human fertility. These other limits to reproduction are all reduced by lower population, so as the population falls, the rate of reproduction will rise to compensate.
  3. The main likely causes for the reductions in sperm-count which are cited in the article (pesticides, plastics, obesity, smoking and stress) are all also likely to reduce (eventually) if the human population reduces due to low sperm-counts.

I really don't think that reduced human fertility poses an extinction threat; I actually see it as a benefit, because the world desperately needs a lower human population. We have other greater and more immediate threats to the continuance of the human race to worry about.

If Dr. Levine really believes what he has stated, then he needs to back it up with more research and facts, as any real scientist would. Such unfounded speculation has no place in science, and he should be ashamed.