An American One-Child Policy?

A recent Senate confirmation hearing tested tolerance for hardline population control

On September 30, 2021, the United States Senate confirmed Tracy Stone-Manning as the new director of the Bureau of Land Management (, Sept. 30). Choosing someone to fill the Bureau of Land Management director position is not normally cause for a national furor, but this time was different. In a contentious hearing in July, Senator John Barrasso (R-WY) questioned Stone-Manning on her role in an eco-terrorist tree-spiking campaign conducted in 1989. Stone-Manning is accused of sending the United States Forest Service a profanity-laced letter that year with the threatening information that trees in Idaho’s Clearwater National Forest had been spiked with metal rods, a practice intended to injure or kill loggers and mill workers as a way to protect trees from harvesting. Even under strong pressure from Senator Barrasso and in the face of facts of the case presented by the former criminal investigator charged with prosecuting the tree spikers, Stone-Manning maintains that her involvement is merely “alleged.”

Prioritizing flora and fauna over human beings is hardly uncommon for eco-terrorists. It is, in fact, how eco-terrorism can best be defined and is probably not such an extreme position among those who work in the environmental-control sector of the federal bureaucracy. But what was particularly disturbing about Stone-Manning’s case, beyond her “alleged” complicity in a terrorist act which could easily have killed or maimed innocent people, were the details that emerged during the hearings regarding her views on population control. For example, Stone-Manning’s master’s thesis, presented to the University of Montana, contained references to young children as an “environmental hazard” and advocated for population control in order to save the planet. The New York Post, reporting on these views, rightly linked Stone-Manning’s ideology to that underpinning the People’s Republic of China’s recently-phased-out “One-Child Policy.”

The confirmation of one Bureau of Land Management (BLM) director with extreme anti-child views does not mean that the United States is poised to follow China in regulating the number of children that Americans may bear and raise. But the sea-change in America toward socialism does indicate that an American One-Child Policy may not be as far-fetched as we might think. I think it’s likely and that trial balloons for such a policy could be floated sooner rather than later.

One might even say that Stone-Manning’s confirmation process is just that, a trial balloon to gauge voters’ tolerance for hard-edged population control. If Stone-Manning was vetted before the White House submitted her name for the BLM directorship, then it was surely known that she had advocated having fewer children to save the Earth (to say nothing about her “alleged” eco-terrorist proclivities). Even if that information came out only during Senator Barrasso’s questioning, however, the Biden regime still did not withdraw her nomination. Letting her ride it out was a good way, if anyone was paying attention, to get a feeling for how Americans would react to, say, bureaucratic guidelines that women give birth to only two children, or even one, or none, if we want to follow population control logic to its obvious conclusion. The fact that someone with anti-child population control views was nominated by the White House and confirmed to a bureaucratic leadership post is evidence of something very dark afoot among our elites.

This dark turn is hardly about just driving spikes into trees. It is much more fundamentally about socialism, the ideology du jour in our nation’s capital, on college campuses, and in newsrooms. And the socialist lurch in our country these past few years is much more portentous for the future of childhood than we might think.

I have come to see socialism not so much as an economic theory—for on those grounds it fails miserably—but rather as a consequence of godlessness. Remember that the rallying cry of socialism is to “seize the means of production.” I think the early socialists meant this only proximately about factories and mills. Seizing the means of production is, at root, a theological subversion. God is the author and source of all life, of everything that is. To take that into human hands is the real goal of socialism. Marx wanted to control that which no man can understand. This is the real devilment of the creed. Marx hated God. Capitalists were only a ready-to-hand stand in. Freud would have had a field day.

This militant godlessness also explains, incidentally, why socialism doesn’t work. The shabbiness of socialist countries is a direct result of the human management, or attempted human management, of creation. The best we little proletariat Prometheuses can do is cold-water block apartments and dreary, giant statues to our new human gods. No one in his right mind wants to put in eight hours of cheerful labor to keep the grim gears of a godless machine turning for one more sterile shift. Long live the worker, they say. The workers, meanwhile, commit suicide en masse.

The family dies, too. Socialist countries boast of factories and productivity, of the numbers of tractors cranked out and the tons of fertilizer loaded onto barges for farms. But in the homes of socialist lands, the family is often found dwindling. This is more than just a product of the depressing nature of socialism. Socialist governments come to power by destroying the family and remain in power by continuing to torment it.

The One-Child Policy is the pinnacle of socialist contempt for all that is good. The socialist state necessarily hates the newborn baby as one more mouth to feed—there’s the stinginess of those who worship production, of course. But the real cause of the socialists’ contempt for the newborn is that a baby is a reminder that the means of production are, in the end, completely mysterious. The socialist has seized nothing. He has fooled himself, but not God. The rage against God’s gifts to parents is, in this sense, completely understandable. Socialists loathe children, for children refute socialism entirely. The means of production are always God’s, not man’s.

As the United States turns turtle and goes over to the socialist camp, we should fully expect its government to take the usual socialist course and ban procreation. When Senator Susan Collins (R) of Maine says she wants to codify Roe but maintain exceptions for religious freedom, she reveals herself to be sadly delusional. Religion, “the opiate of the masses,” insists that the means of production are miraculous. The state has five-year plans and Planned Parenthood; parents have unplanned joy. That is what the socialist state loathes most of all. No socialist state has ever let religion keep it from warring on the child.

The confirmation of population control advocate Tracy Stone-Manning to a minor bureaucratic office in the federal behemoth is not proof-positive that an American One-Child Policy is in the offing. But it is a significant step in that direction. After all, the government is mandating vaccines produced with aborted fetal tissue. How much conceptual distance is there, really, to a government mandate that fetuses be aborted?


Jason Morgan is associate professor at Reitaku University in Kashiwa, Japan.

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