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What is Voluntary Human Extinction?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 26 June 2014
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Voluntary Human Extinction is a movement that advocates the eventual disappearance of the human race from the face of the earth. The underlying premise for the movement is that humanity has been the cause for the extinction of a number of species over the millennia, and that the continued expansion of the human race will only endanger more forms of life, through the depletion of the earth’s natural resources. According to persons who support Voluntary Human Extinction, the only logical alternative is to naturally curb the growth pattern of humanity and allow the race to eventually die off of its own accord.

Members of the movement do not promote any type of violent acts to speed this process of human extinction along. Instead the Voluntary Human Extinction movement centers around one simple course of action. Humans must choose to stop reproducing. By ceasing to breed, current issues of overpopulation will begin to level off. At the same time, the drain on the planet’s natural resources will begin to slow. This will allow the ecosystem to begin healing from the damage caused during the rein of humanity on the earth. The essential philosophy for the movement is captured by the motto that is found on most of their literature: may we live long and die out.

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Persons who identify with the goal of Voluntary Human Extinction are generally divided into two different classes of promotion or support. One type of supporters is referred to as volunteers. Volunteers are those who have committed themselves to either cease producing offspring, or to refrain from having children altogether if they have not yet begun to reproduce.

Supporters are people who have some sympathy with the Voluntary Human Extinction, from the perspective of curbing population growth. However, supporters see the extinction of the human race as neither desirable nor viable. Supporters tend to promote the concept of reducing the size of the human race so that the planet can adequately support both humans and other forms of life without depleting vital resources.

The size and scope of the Voluntary Human Extinction movement is hard to ascertain. However, the movement does operate a web site, and has received some degree of media attention since the dawn of the 21st century. Les U. Knight is generally acknowledged as the founder of the VHE movement and is the owner and operator of the web site that promotes this philosophy.

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