Kill the infected rodents, or allow the infected rodents to kill us?

The Black Death, a plague which swept over the Planet in the 14th Century that was thought to have been spread by the fleas that live on rats. A disease spread by pests that killed over 20 million people in Europe alone.  Population growth may not be the first thing that springs to mind when you think of The Black Death, but perhaps population control is (probably not, but I’m going to talk about it anyway).

We as human beings, look at The Plague and see it as a horrifying event in history but was it really so bad? Yes, it killed a lot of people, but just think how much more populated our planet would be if it hadn’t have happened. All I ever hear is people moaning about how there’s too many cars on the road – count yourselves lucky, it could have been millions of times worse! How could we have possibly stopped it from happening anyway? If The Plague happened in the 21st century we would probably have just exterminated all of the rats, as we did in the case of Mad Cows Disease, but why do we value our own lives so much more than theirs? Survival instinct you might say, yet we claim to be rational beings who are able to rise above our instincts in order to make moral choices. In this particular scenario, it’s hard to know the right and wrong – kill the infected rodents, or allow the infected rodents to kill us?

Population control is necessary to every species on the planet, there can be too much a good thing as the saying goes – not that the human race is always a good thing! As our population grows, so comes the time when population control will be necessary to us. Maybe the world will follow in China’s footsteps and adopt a one child policy, I suppose we’ll just have to wait and see.