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Producer of 'Demographic Winter' Responds to 'The Nation's' Polemic

Contact: Don Feder, 508-405-1337; Demographic Winter


MEDIA ADVISORY, Feb. 18 /Christian Newswire/ -- Barry McLerran, producer of "Demographic Winter: the decline of the human family," responded to an article in The Nation, America's largest-circulation leftwing publication, which attacks the documentary as conservative, pro-natalist propaganda.


McLerran observed. "We didn't expect the documentary to be criticized by someone who has only seen the 3-minute trailer and is attacking 'Demographic Winter' based on preconceived notions."


The article by Kathryn Joyce ("Missing: The 'Right' Babies") will appear in the March 3 issue, but is now available online at The Nation's website.


Joyce claims those who warn of plummeting birthrates worldwide are really only concerned about maintaining white majorities in Europe and the United States, in light of declining native birthrates and increasing immigration from North Africa and the Middle East.


"But the film notes that falling birthrates is a worldwide phenomenon -- affecting developing as well as developed nations," McLerran says. "It speaks of emigration as a threat to developing nations."


The documentary reports that Egypt's total fertility rate dropped from 7.3 (children per woman) in 1965 to 3.7 today. The United Nations estimates the nation will be below replacement-level (2.1) by the middle of the century. Iran is now the first country in the Middle East to have achieved below-replacement fertility (having gone from 2.8 in 1996 to around 2 today). 


Joyce seeks to debunk the concept of demographic winter (suggesting it's a scare tactic to promote pro-family policies) without citing a single statistic.


McLerran: "Statistics are inconvenient for someone arguing from the author's perspective. How do you explain the 50% decline in birthrates, worldwide, in the past half-century – or the fact that the UN estimates there will be 248 million fewer children in the world in 2050 than there are today?"


Joyce claims the documentary is a springboard for "conservative scholars, activists and European politicians" to advance their views on the family.


"In fact," says director Rick Stout, "most of those interviewed for the film do not consider themselves 'conservatives' at all. Besides a smattering of pro-family activists, interviewees addressed the crisis of falling birthrates from an academic perspective."


Those who appear in the film include sociologists, demographers, and economists (among them, a Nobel laureate in economics) from some of the most prestigious universities here and abroad.


McLerran concluded: "We look forward to 'Demographic Winter: the decline of the human family' stimulating a candid discussion of a global  crisis and a debate based on the reality of demographic decline -- instead of the type of polemic contained in The Nation article."


To view a trailer for "Demographic Winter" or for more information, go to www.demographicwinter.com. To schedule an interview with Producer Barry McLerran, contact Don Feder at (508) 405-1337.