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Authoritative and Democratic Parenting Programs
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The Big Answer

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Hope For Humankind

a book by Roderic Gorney

(our site's book review)

This is a message of hope from Roderic Gorney on behalf of Ashley Montagu, the 1995 Humanist of the Year. Gorney says that the biggest danger to mankind’s survival is not nukes , overpopulation or poverty. It’s a deficiency of love. “Given what we now know of the psycho-neurobiology of health, if we could, by some miracle, suddenly assure to every baby and child sufficient love, we could within one generation substantially turn present peril into potential paradise.”

He says that we need improved character in order to realize and actualize the need for all our young to get enough TLC (tender loving care), and this TLC is the key to survival. How people surmount survival dangers depends on their character. And: “Predominant cultures and societies today shape character toward painful frustration by fostering inner and outer conflict. Predominant cultures and societies tomorrow—if any—will be those that instead shape character toward loving fulfillment by fostering inner and outer harmony.” Flat-gradient nurturance, P.E.T., and win-win, democratic parenting combined with effective need filling would accomplish the latter.

He says “. . . we have come to accept it as ‘normal’ that we must increasingly take advantage of, rather than take care of, each other. . . . only 500 generations ago our human relationships were so much more loving.” (This was when people began to accumulate surpluses from the newly invented technologies of agriculture and animal husbandry, and those that had more could and did exploit those that had less. Soon warfare evolved.)

His prescription: (1) Relinquish despair—it isn’t true that our efforts at helping to solve the precarious current dilemma of humankind are hopeless and in vain. (2) Give up the rationalization that our alpha-male-based domination-submission conflicts are the legacy we received from our primate forbears. (3) Adjust our society so that it empowers and encourages nurturing, experimentation, curiosity, good thinking, song, dance, being, and encouragement. (4) Reduce population to sustainable levels. (5) Dump authoritarian discipline and punishment (in favor of authoritative parenting).

Overpopulation causes many of Earth's other problems—it's a major contributor to war and environmental destruction
Overpopulation causes many of Earth's other problems—it's a major contributor to war and environmental destruction