Writes Katha, invoking Lerner,
[F]ertility rates -- the average number of children per woman -- have fallen below replacement level in ninety countries, including such Catholic stalwarts as Ireland (1.9), Spain (1.3), Italy (1.3) and Portugal (1.4). Even the much-trumpeted increasing US population is mostly a product of immigration (the actual fertility rate is 2.0). While politicians in Japan (1.3) seem fatally drawn to chastising women as recalcitrant "baby-making machines," European governments have started asking if making life easier for working mothers might do the trick....[It wouldn't] be the first time a government has done the right thing for the wrong reason.
Population implosion leading to paid parental leave? Hey, we'll take it. Happy Mother's Day, all you (paid and unpaid) Moms!