Novelist. Author of APSARAS and tales from the beautiful Saigh Valley. First person to quantify spiritual values.

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Monday 5 December 2011

Feckless or Successful?

A thirty-four year old Dundee man has fifteen children by fourteen different women with a possible two more on the way. Since he is on benefits he cannot maintain any of them so that his 'harem' is supported by the tax payers. He has been described as 'feckless' by the newspapers but looked at in a different light, he might be a success. In the future he will be able to trace his biological line over a huge swathe of the population  in the same way that Genghis Khan's genes are said to be present in a large percentage of Asian people. Compare that  with most people of merit who restrict their progeny to the customary one or two and you can see that in next decades the numbers descended from his seed will swell to such a level that one ought to ask whether or not he did, after all, do well. How could I say that, you ask? Well! Man, like every other living thing, flora or fauna, follows the same simple path of:-  1. Being born. 2. Maturing. 3. Reproducing. 4. Dying.
I suggest this man is excelling at stage three!

He excuses his behaviour by saying that he is only complying with the Bible's instruction to 'Go forth and multiply' and, worryingly, it seems that there is no end to the numbers of women, presumably single, who want to be with child by this man. He is a one-man fertility service with presumably a high success rate. For a woman who wants to fulfill her biological need to have a family but has been unable to find a partner, he must seem a godsend. (On a darker note it is conceivable that a married woman, unable to conceive naturally with her sterile husband, might use his services and pass off the resulting child as their own.)

This spontaneous, albeit, informal 'harem' in many ways replicates those where they are the custom amongst those who can afford them. The dominant male keeps many women for the purpose of either pleasure or siring a large number of children. These women, often daughters of friends and trading partners were provided to cement social or commercial relationships to the mutual advantage of all concerned. It didn't matter what the women looked like or how intelligent they were as long as they satisfied the ruler in any one of several aspects. I can imagine that for some of them, the loss of liberty to choose a mate was offset by being part of a large, companionable family and possibly being spared the fate of lonely spinsterhood.
The point I am trying to make is that harems, natural in some societies, may not be a bad thing as long as the dominant male can afford to keep all the women and their children in comfort and treats them all as equal. The man in Dundee has found a way for the general public to fund his own lifestyle. Who is the fool? The man or the taxpayer?

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