A young Indian man has decided to sue his parents for giving birth to him without his consent. It may sound like satire, but “anti-natalist” Raphael Samuel is at the forefront of a social movement so new it barely has a name.
“I love my parents,” Samuel insists, “but they had me for their joy and their pleasure.” The Mumbai resident says his life has been “amazing” – he just doesn’t believe it should have been forced on him, and he certainly doesn’t want to inflict it on someone else.
“I don’t see why I should put another life through the rigmarole of school and finding a career, especially when they didn’t ask to exist,” he told Indian outlet the Print.
“Anti-natalism” – a conscious, morally-influenced choice not to reproduce – appears to be catching on in India, with multiple Facebook groups and real-life meetups springing up to serve this unusual outgrowth of the child-free movement. It has linked up with the decades-old Voluntary Human Extinction Movement, an environmentalist current that essentially posits the world would be a better place if humans quietly died out, and attracted “closeted” child-free Indian couples who say they’ve faced judgment, even persecution in their communities and families for choosing not to have offspring.
Posting as Nihilanand on Facebook, Samuel shares droll memes (“Isn’t forcing a child into this world and then forcing it to have a career kidnapping and slavery?”) featuring photos of himself sporting a billowing black beard.