Rylee McDermott Edgewood-Colesburg High School Edgewood, IA Philippines, Factor 15 Philippines: The Overpopulation Crisis The Philippines is an under-developed country with a desperate need for a new start. While the people there are very loyal to the church, full of religion, tradition, and culture, those are some of the very factors holding their society back from the flourishing future they could obtain with change. The Philippines hold one of the highest population densities and fastest growing populations in Asia, yet they lack government funded family planning methods (“PHILIPPINES”). Overall, the Filipinos suffer from an incredible influence that becomes hard to escape, and yet for progress to be made it must be overcome. Currently the Roman Catholic Church holds a tremendous influence by leading population regulations throughout the government. With this leadership, birth control methods have not been widely accepted and the Filipino population has continued to get out of hand. The Philippines need political collaboration to make a stand for the good of the people because as of now, politicians choose not to fight the church on any political matter for fear of losing precious votes and overall, their campaigns (“Cabral”). Even though 90% of polled voters said they would vote for a politician in support of modern contraception, this hasn’t made a difference (Rauhala). The tie seems to be too strong, especially since most members of Congress are of strong religious affiliations. While they may feel modern contraceptives would be a step in the right direction for the Philippines, their relation pressures them into voting against any reproductive health bills (Diaz). If anything is going to be solved, if prosperity is going to be delivered to the people, if the Filipinos want to raise their economic status, the population equation must be controlled. Without an extreme change, this country will certainly continue suffering from not only overpopulation, but also starvation, malnutrition, lack of education, and lives of endless poverty. The Roman Catholic Church has incredible influence over the Filipinos, but in order to provide the desperate changes needed, the church must be removed from the equation of developing family planning methods. When investigating the issues that take place in the Philippines, it makes sense to have city life as a focal point. Not only is that where the congestion of overall population takes place, but it also leads to the core of all the issues. In the uplands, costal regions, and countryside, Filipinos have an extremely difficult time making a living because of agriculturally depleted lands. They are forced to move into the cities to find other work. After migration, they sell items, work in factories, or work construction. The men come in uneducated and unskilled, and they often end up remaining unemployed and scavenging for food (“Is Work, Child’s Play?”). Women, being the second leader of the house, are forced to step in and try to find work (“PHILIPPINES”). The women often find a low paying job in a factory assembly line (“Reports”). The cost of every essential item needed is on the rise while families try to live off $2 per day (“Birth control”). While the parents will do everything they can to earn a peso, the average size of 7 children in that family can still be difficult to feed, so children themselves are forced to take to the streets to add some money to the family’s income (“Poverty in the Philippines”). The children are often forced into drugs, robbery, and scams. They typically don’t complete school because of location and the inevitable expenses. The families just can’t afford to put 7 children through school, so the children are left with little education and little hope for their futures. All the time kids spend on the streets often results in respiratory issues, pneumonia, and even injury from automobiles. Having no access to affordable health care, these conditions can...
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