The open letter has provoked debate online...
From the editors of Women & Home
An open letter has been written to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge urging them to ‘lead by example’ and not have anymore children.
The letter, from an organisation called ‘Having Kids’, lists reasons such as ‘climate change’ and ‘economic inequalities’ as major factors that should affect the couple’s decision to extend their family.
‘Having Kids’ is a San Francisco-based organisation that promotes, ‘a smaller, sustainable family.’ Their vision promotes giving children, ‘a fair start in life by having a smaller family where they [the parents] can invest more in their child.’
Having Kids executive director Anne Green has said that the royal couple have a unique opportunity to lead by example by not having any more children and calling their family of four complete.
‘William and Kate have a tremendous opportunity to model their choice of having a smaller family’, says Anne Green.
‘By doing so, they set an example as to what has the most potential for mitigating climate change and its impacts, including severe flooding, deadlier heatwaves, increase in diseases, and wildlife extinctions.
‘Moreover, given the vast economic inequalities in the world today, the couple also has the opportunity to model a simple principle: That every child deserves as fair start in life.’
Green’s open letter has received mixed reactions, and comes after the Duchess of Cambridge hinted that she would like to extend their family. Whilst abroad on their official visit to Poland, Catherine alluded to having, “more babies”, creating a media storm around the couple’s plan to have a third child.
The couple are already parents to Prince George, four, and Princess Charlotte, two. Children who, the ‘Having Kids’ executive director points out, lead very privileged lives.
‘We know that Prince George and Princess Charlotte are certain to have wonderful lives, protected from the deprivations of poverty and the threat of environmental degradation.
‘They will receive optimal amounts of care and attention, as well as the best possible education.
‘But the same can’t be said of every future child.’
‘Having Kids is focusing on the royal family because… Given their public stature, they can lead by example to impact family planning decisions around the world.’
Green’s comments directed at the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have been met with both praise and disdain.
Facebook user Rachel Zyders wrote, ‘This is beyond the most ridiculous thing I have ever read. If someone wrote a letter to me suggesting how many children I should have, regardless of my societal status, I’d be sure to kindly return the letter.’
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While another added, ‘I agree with Rachel Zyders. If anything, your organization is a waste of resources and it’s clear this is a publicity stunt.’
However others have shown support for the organisation’s request, suggesting that perhaps the Duke and Duchess should lead by example.
But for many, planning a family is a very personal choice and regardless of their royal status and global renown, they believe that the Catherine and Prince William should be left alone to make their own decisions about their family. Free from both public pressure and societal scrutiny.
Although ‘Having Kids’ published a further statement about ‘why we are asking this royal couple to consider modeling a smaller family’, Kensington Palace has not issued any comment or response to the open letter.
Words by Rachael Martin