News

Bindi Irwin clashes with Hillary Clinton on population cap

Bindi Irwin is a passionate advocate for wildlife, just like her mum and dad.
Bindi Irwin is a passionate advocate for wildlife, just like her mum and dad. Contributed - ABC TV publicity

SUNSHINE Coast wildlife campaigner Bindi Irwin's views on population control have put her at odds with one of the world's most powerful women.

News Ltd reported today that an essay she was invited to write for US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's e-journal was drastically edited before it was to be published.

The daughter of Steve and Terri Irwin was asked to write 800-1000 words on why she had chosen to devote her life to wildlife conservation.

But after writing exactly 1000 words urging society to address overpopulation, the former first lady's department returned it for final approval with most of it edited out.

 The row comes after a leading United States population lobbyist questioned why Australia seems intent on copying the worst mistakes of his own country.

Roy Beck, the executive director of powerful lobby group NumbersUSA, which has 1.4 million members, visited the Sunshine Coast as part of an Australian visit which has included talks with politicians and advocates of lower immigration in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Canberra.

On the Coast he visited Australia Zoo and met Bindi and Terri Irwin, who he said fully understood the role population growth played in habitat reduction and extinction of native fauna.

In 2011 Bindi Irwin launched Dick Smith's book "Population Crisis".

In the essay, the daughter of the late Crocodile Hunter, who stunned the world with her tribute to her dad after he died, used the analogy of throwing a party and having too many guests turn up to explain her point of view.

>> You can read Bindi Irwin's unedited essay here

"How is it possible that our fragile planet can sustain these masses of people?" she writes.

"Think of it this way. Pretend for a moment that I'm having a party, inviting 15 of my closest friends. I've rented a room big enough to fit 15 people, I've bought 15 sandwiches for each of my friends to eat, and I have put together 15 party bags, one for each friend.

"My party is about to start, and I hear a knock at the door. My friends are here! Only, when I open the door, 70 of my friends are standing there wanting to come to the party!

"What do I do? My room is only big enough to fit 15, with 70 we won't have any room to move and dance. I don't have enough food.

"Do I divide the sandwiches among the 70 people? But then everyone will still be hungry. What about the party bags? Do I only give the party bags out to my closest friends? Isn't that unfair to everyone else?

"That is the crisis facing mother earth today."

Terri Irwin told News Ltd that Bindi wrote to Hillary Clinton's organisation and said 'what happened to freedom of speech? This is my opinion and I don't want that edited out'."

Topics:  australia zoo, bindi irwin, editors picks, hillary clinton



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