.- The chemist who made a key discovery leading to the invention of the birth control pill has written a commentary calling demographic decline in Europe a âhorror scenarioâ and a âcatastropheâ brought on in part by the pillâs invention.
Mr. Carl Djerassi, now 85 years old, was one of three researchers whose formulation of the synthetic progestagen Norethisterone marked a key step in the creation of the first oral contraceptive pill, the Guardian reports.
In a personal commentary in the Austrian newspaper Der Standard, Djerassi said his invention is partly to blame for demographic imbalance in Europe. On the continent, he argued, there is now âno connection at all between sexuality and reproduction.â
âThis divide in Catholic Austria, a country which has on average 1.4 children per family, is now complete,â he wrote.
Djerassi described families who had decided against reproduction as âwanting to enjoy their schnitzels while leaving the rest of the world to get on with it.â
The fall in the birth rate, he claimed, was an âepidemicâ far worse but less highlighted than obesity. In his view, young Austrians who fail to procreate are committing national suicide.
If it is not possible to reverse the demographic decline, an âintelligent immigration policyâ will be necessary, Djerassi said.
According to the Guardian, Archbishop of Vienna Cardinal Christoph Schonborn told Austrian TV that Pope Paul VI had predicted the pill would cause a dramatic fall in the birth rate.
âSomebody above suspicion like Carl Djerassi ... is saying that each family has to produce three children to maintain population levels, but weâre far away from that,â the cardinal said.